Another discriminatory act in the U.S has made a Muslim woman earn $5M from AT&T. The woman, who belongs to Kansas City, converted to Islam from Christianity and was awarded $5M by one of the biggest phone carriers in the country in punitive damages.
The issue was taken to court where judges ruled the decision in the woman’s favor. The jury found out that AT&T has made a hostile work environment after she conversed with them, which led to filing a case against the company.
Forty one year old Susann Bashir, who is a married woman, sued the telecom company’s division located in Southwestern Bell as she found the conduct of the company’s supervisors as discriminatory and offensive. Susann used to work as a network technician for the company and converted to Islam six years after she began working for AT&T.
According to Susann’s attorney, after Susann converted to Islam in 2005 and started covering her head by a thing called “Hijab” in the Muslim culture, her co-workers labeled her as a terrorist. When she used to go to the mosque to offer Friday prayers, she was told by her co-workers that she is going to hell. Susann’s attorney, Amy Coopman also revealed that Susann’s manager constantly told her to get rid of the hijab and used to make fun of her by insults for wearing it. It was also revealed that Bashir was once grabbed, when a co-worker tried ripping off her hijab.
Susann took the matter to court and was fired in 2010. However, Marty Richter, a spokesperson for AT&T said that the company will appeal but on the other hand, Amy Cooper, Susann’s attorney said that AT&T has a very well written policy but only if they followed it, nothing of this sort would have happened in the first place.
Such cases of discriminatory acts are not uncommon particularly in the States, where workers and people are usually harassed because of prejudices set by the society and external affairs that have shaped the minds of an average person in the country.