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February 07, 2001
Judge Criticizes Employee and Lawyer for Bringing Bias Case
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ge Milton I. Shadur of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois was not happy with Sharlyn Monley and her attorney. He sharply criticized both of them for using antidiscrimination laws to bring a suit without merit, thus discouraging others with legitimate complaints from bringing them forward. He dismissed the suit, saying they had presented no evidence of racial discrimination.

Sharlyn Monley was terminated by her employer, Q International Courier Inc., after she was tardy 29 times, left early, and missed meetings. At one point she had been put on 90-day probation because of her tardiness. Monley contended that she was fired because she was in a biracial relationship and had had a child by that union.

The judge wrote in his decision that, "Because of the universal knowledge that it takes only an aggressive employee, a complaisant lawyer and $150 to embroil any employer in protracted and expensive litigation, an employer may sometimes cut an employee far more slack than he or she deserves, tolerating intolerable behavior in an effort to avert such a groundless involvement."

Judge Shadur did not think much of Monley's lawyer either, calling the attorney's efforts on the case "flawed workmanship."

(Monley v. Q International Courier Inc., N.D. Ill., No. 99 C 3557, 1/23/01 ).
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