March 20, 2013
Around Town By Neal Tepel
New York NY – Four workers, at the Historical Landmark Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx, filed a federal lawsuit against Woodlawn alleging serious civil rights violations by cemetery officials. The lawsuit names the president of the cemetery and numerous supervisors for a pattern of systematic discrimination against minority workers.
Their lawsuit describes an extremely hostile work environment at Woodlawn, where minority employees were expected to tolerate racist jokes and slurs. When these four workers spoke out on behalf of themselves and others, Woodlawn allegedly punished them by assigning them to difficult, dangerous jobs, resulting in severe injuries. According to the four employees supervisors at Woodlawn systematically discriminated against minority workers, and retaliated against those that protested this unfair treatment.
The workers are supported by many community groups, including the South Bronx Community Congress.
Spokesperson attorney Ramon Jimenez said, “Finally after all these racial abuses we will be asking the federal courts for justice. We cannot tolerate those practices in our own backyard. The Woodlawn Cemetery is a beautiful place to go visit and tour; the management, however, from the president on down, has deeply tarnished the legacy of the cemetery and has failed to recognize that the workers are just as much a part of the history that makes it a landmark.”