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Robert Trigaux

Former HR employee at Jabil Circuit sues firm for workplace discrimination



Wake up and good morning. The Venture blog does not report often on work discrimination lawsuits, in part because they are, unfortunately, way too common in the Tampa Bay courts (and the rest of the country). But the recent suit filed by Tampa's Sangita Land, a human resource compliance manager, is notable because it claims she was fired from her HR job because of a white male culture at one of the region's major corporations: Jabil Circuit in St. Petersburg.

I've covered Jabil for many years and, based on gender in the senior ranks, Jabil's long been pretty much an all boys organization though it's shown a few signs of broadening opportunities there in recent years. Then again, a lot of U.S. companies are male-dominated like Jabil. In this case, Land claims she had been recruited by a number of firms in 2009, including Raymond James Financial, but chose to take a legal compliance job in the HR department at Jabil. Her early review, according to the lawsuit, was glowing and Land received a "4.4 out of 5" job rating -- which is high based on Jabil's performance system.

But when Land returned from maternity leave and saw she had been passed over for promotion, the lawsuit says she was told by her supervisor that women are not promoted at Jabil because they tend to have children, which stalls their careers. The lawsuit outlines a predictable tale of Land's increasing alienation at work, her seeking legal counsel and her eventual dismissal from Jabil.

"At that time," the lawsuit states, "only 5 of 45 company executives were female, only 3 of 41 company senior directors were female, and only 20 of 115 company directors were female." Land, who is from the Philippines, is represented by the Florin Roebig law firm, a Palm Harbor firm that specializes in representing workers in discrimination matters.

Workplace lawsuits are common. Recent suits filed against businesses in the Tampa Bay area include claims against Hudson's Furniture, Carrabba's, CarMax, Nielsen Media, the Barry A. Cohen law firm and Universal health Care, among others.

-- Robert Trigaux, Business Columnist, Tampa Bay Times



[Last modified: Friday, August 31, 2012 8:21am]


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