In answer to lawsuit, Boeing calls reported noose at SC plant ‘knotted string’

In answer to lawsuit, Boeing calls reported noose at SC plant ‘knotted string’
FILE - In this April 10, 2019, file photo, a Boeing 737 Max 8 airplane being built for India-based Jet Airways lands following a test flight at Boeing Field in Seattle. An Ethiopian pilot pleaded with his bosses for more training on the Boeing Max, just weeks before one of the airline’s jets crashed, killing everyone on board. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File) (Source: Ted S. Warren)

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCSC) - In a response to a racial discrimination lawsuit filed in federal court in Charleston, lawyers for the Boeing Company referred to the noose which employee Curtis Anthony claims he found over his desk as, “knotted string."

“Answering Paragraph 17 of the Complaint, Defendant (Boeing) admits only that a knotted string, which Plaintiff (Anthony) calls a “noose,” was reported to the company on or about February 28, 2019,” the lawsuit response states.

While Boeing has previously admitted that a noose was found, the lawsuit response denies that it was found over or near Anthony’s work station.

“Defendant admits that Plaintiff was one of those who reported the presence of this knotted string, but specifically denies that it was located over or near Plaintiff’s workstation or otherwise directed at Plaintiff.”

The suit also alleges co-workers urinated on his desk and chair and used the N-word in his presence, both of which Boeing also denied in their response, stating Anthony made no such complaints to the company about urination.

The company has further asked that some of Anthony’s claims such as breach of contract be dismissed.

In an initial letter when the reported noose was found, Boeing provided an emailed statement from Brad Zaback, the Vice President and General Manager of the 787 program, who at that time called it a “racially-charged symbol."

Anthony believes nothing has improved at Boeing since he filed the lawsuit. The company says they have fired the employee responsible for the noose.

Boeing released the following statement when the lawsuit was filed:

“The Boeing Company has been named in a lawsuit filed by Curtis Anthony, a current teammate working in Boeing South Carolina Aftbody building. Anthony is alleging race discrimination, retaliation, intentional infliction of emotional distress, violations of the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA), breach of contract and breach of contract with fraudulent intent.

"While Mr. Anthony is a valued Boeing South Carolina teammate, there is no validity to his allegations. In fact, Mr. Anthony’s requests for FMLA leave have been consistently and repeatedly approved by the company in an expeditious manner.

"Moreover, most of Mr. Anthony’s allegations were never brought to the attention of management, giving the company no opportunity to investigate these claims. The single issue he did raise was dealt with promptly and in a fair manner.”

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