Johnson & Bell, Ltd. (Chicago, IL) Christopher Carlos and Michael Lizzadro Secure Summary Judgment in Discrimination Dispute

Shareholder, Christopher J. Carlos, and Associate Attorney, Michael J. Lizzadro, obtained summary judgment in favor of their auto retailer client before the Illinois Human Rights Commission.  The plaintiff, a Hispanic employee who was fluent in Spanish, sued for race and national origin discrimination and retaliation.  The plaintiff argued that he was being singled out by being required to work job shifts that were inconvenient to him while others did not and by being asked to assist Spanish speaking customers in the store.  The Judge granted summary judgment, finding that the employee did not suffer a materially adverse employment action in either scenario.  First, the shift change was a minor change in employment that did not equate to a materially adverse employment action, and, two, the employee was hired to interact with customers, including Spanish speaking customers, so he was in effect being asked to perform the job for which he was hired.