U.S. Sixth Circuit - The FindLaw 6th Circuit Court of Appeals Opinion Summaries Blog

April 2017 Archives

No Hostile Work Environment at Union for 'Jim Crow' Comments

Over a sharp dissent about 'Jim Crow-like' comments, a federal appeals court said a black woman did not prove a hostile work environment against a union based on "a smattering of offensive conduct."

The U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals said the plaintiff had a novel claim because the court had never addressed whether Title VII covers hostile work environment claims against a union. If the law applied, however, the court said the plaintiff did not have enough evidence to support her claim in Phillips v. UAW International.

"Whether unions can be held liable for a Title VII hostile work environment claim is only at issue if Phillips has made the adequate showing that there was a hostile work environment," Judge David McKeague said. "She hasn't. "