DOJ Paralegal Sues Department for Discrimination
Posted May 30, 2008 10:40 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss
An African-American paralegal who worked in the Justice Department for 13 years has sued for discrimination.
Paralegal Joi Hyatte claims supervisors sought outside white and Hispanic job candidates for higher paying analyst positions in the voting rights section and failed to offer the jobs to existing, qualified paralegals, reports The BLT: The Blog of Legal Times. Hyatte says she had outstanding reviews and took on more analyst work in July 2006 without an increase in pay or a new title.
Her suit contends several employees complained of discrimination and harassment in the department’s voting rights section, but no investigation was conducted, the blog says. Named in the suit are the former chief of the voting rights section, John Tanner, and the former chief of the section 5 unit, Yvette Rivera. The blog was unable to get comments from either official.
Hyatte alleges that Rivera downgraded black employees’ performance reviews and denied them bonuses. Hyatte also claims Tanner failed to discipline three white male lawyers for insensitive conduct toward two analysts they referred to as lesbians.
Hyatte is represented by Georgetown law professor David Vladeck.