Workplace

KC company accused of racial discrimination in two firings

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission on Tuesday sued a Kansas City company, charging racial discrimination against two African-American employees.

According to the EEOC’s lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Kansas City, QWP Holdings LLC, doing business as Profile Cabinet and Design, fired Brandon Fitzpatrick and Theopilis Bryant in a discriminatory way.

The company has three locations in the Kansas City area, according to its website.

Investigators for the federal agency charged that race was a factor when both men were fired in 2013. The company had stated that Fitzpatrick falsified Bryant’s time card, but the EEOC said evidence indicated a white employee may have been responsible for the time card issue.

Doug Lytle, co-owner and president of Profile, expressed shock at the lawsuit and disputed that race entered into the company’s treatment of the two men. He said both individuals were held to the same disciplinary points system as all employees. He said their suspensions or dismissals were handled according to the same standards for all workers.

Dayna Deck, a senior trial attorney for the EEOC, said conciliation efforts failed with the company. Lytle said his only meeting with the EEOC occurred more than two years ago and that he learned of the lawsuit when called by the media.

The lawsuit seeks compensation for lost wages and emotional damage plus punitive damages. Deck said no dollar figure has been attached to the request for monetary relief.

Diane Stafford: 816-234-4359, @kcstarstafford

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