Steelworker Awarded $25 Million for Racial Harassment at ArcelorMittal Plant

Eight-member jury returns unanimous decision.

A jury has awarded $25 million in damages to an employee of Luxembourg-based steel company ArcelorMittal (IW 1000/40) who says for years he endured racial harassment at his workplace, his lawyer confirmed Wednesday.

Elijah Turley, an African-American, had testified in a three-week trial that racial slurs and other incidents from 2005 to 2008 at a Lackawanna, New York, steel plant left him a broken man.

"It's absolutely shocking that a case like this is in court in 2012," his lawyer, Ryan Mills, said in his closing argument. "It should be viewed as atrocious and intolerable in a civilized society."

An eight-member jury unanimously found Luxembourg-based ArcelorMittal and some of its executives responsible and on Tuesday awarded Turley $25 million in damages, most of it punitive.

The steel giant, which had argued in court that it had taken reasonable steps to stop the incidents, was found liable for allowing a "hostile work environment" and "intentional infliction of emotional distress," the BuffaloNews.com reported.

"Mister Elijah Turley and his family are very pleased that justice was achieved," Mills told AFP.

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2012

See Also:

EEOC Amends Age Discrimination Regulations

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