Black Flight Attendant Sues Delta After Being Terminated For Posting A Meme Of Trump In A KKK Hood
Photo Credit: pexels rodnae productions

Photo Credit: pexels rodnae productions

Black Flight Attendant Sues Delta After Being Terminated For Posting A Meme Of Trump In A KKK Hood

Delta , news
Esthefany Castillo
Esthefany Castillo Aug 16, 2022

Jeffry Surianto Pexels.com

A former Delta flight attendant is suing the airline for employee discrimination. Leondra Taylor alleges that Delta wrongfully terminated her after she shared an image that depicted former President Donald Trump in a Ku Klux Klan hood on her personal social media.

Leondra Taylor filed the lawsuit against her former employer last Monday in a federal district court in Atlanta. In the lawsuit, Ms. Taylor concedes that she did indeed re-share the editorial cartoon. However, she is arguing Delta discriminated against her “because of her race.” Taylor is arguing her re-sharing the post was a “political statement,” and did not amount to being “hateful or discriminatory.”

Here's what we know:

According to the lawsuit, Ms. Taylor’s online activity on her personal Facebook page was flagged to managers by one of her co-workers back in January 2021.  Ms. Taylor was informed by a group of employees that her posts online were unacceptable, and added that the airline company doesn’t “tolerate, disrespectful, hateful or discriminatory posts,” according to the lawsuit. One of her managers specifically citing her Facebook posts as being “racially motivated,” which the company later detailed as being the cause for her termination in April 2021.

In Delta’s code of ethics for employees, it states that “misuse of social or traditional media channels can lead to discipline, including termination of your employment with Delta” and in the section on employees’ political activity, it states: “We respect the rights of employees to be involved personally in their communities and political affairs, including making their own personal political contributions and expressing their personal political views.”

Taylor argues that by sharing the editorial cartoon she was making a political statement and not a racially charged one.

Taylor also claimed in the federal lawsuit that non-Black employees at the American airline weren’t penalized for the same online activity as their Black co-workers. Taylor is suing for punitive damages in what is described as the “defendant’s willful, malicious, intentional, and deliberate acts”, lost wages and general damages for suffering caused by mental and emotional suffering.

Delta's statement:

According to the lawsuit, Ms Taylor’s online activity on her personal Facebook page was flagged to managers by one of her co-workers back in January 2021.  Ms. Taylor was informed by a group of employees that her posts online were unacceptable, and added that the airline company doesn’t “tolerate, disrespectful, hateful or discriminatory posts,” according to the lawsuit. One of her managers specifically citing her Facebook posts as being “racially motivated,” which the company later detailed as being the cause for her termination in April 2021.When The Independent reached out to Delta for a comment a spokesperson for the airline countered Ms. Taylor’s allegations of discrimination and claimed that the former employees’ narrative of events were “not accurate or complete”.

“When Delta employees intermix Delta’s brand with conduct or content that does not reflect our values of professionalism, inclusion, and respect, that conduct can result in discipline or termination,” the Delta spokesperson wrote in an emailed statement.

“While personnel issues are considered private between Delta and its employees, the circumstances described by our former employee are not an accurate or complete explanation of the company’s termination decision.”

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