A University of Texas at Austin professor is suing the university after a supposed race-related incident garnered retaliation by a supervisor.
History professor and plaintiff Alberto Martínez said the incident took place in the spring of 2018, after he distributed a report highlighting racial disparities in pay and promotions within the history department.
The lawsuit states that Martínez alerted his supervisor that there was "discrimination" and "marginalization" of Hispanic employees in the department, and that he was then appointed chair of the new "Committee on Equity" to review governance, salaries and promotions in the department.
Martínez drafted a report titled, "Report: Equity in Salaries and Raises," which included compensation records that revealed unequal pay and promotion in the history department, primarily among Black and Hispanic employees. The report was distributed on Oct. 15, 2018, according to the lawsuit.
Four days later, Martínez was told by a supervisor that the equity committee would be disbanded. Instead, the committee was maintained but the supervisor continually created subcommittees and appointed chairs to them without permission from Martinez.
Subsequently, the supervisor ceased meeting with Martínez in favor of the new subcommittee chairs. The lawsuit stated that the supervisor accused Martínez of creating a "toxic" work environment, making discriminatory and anti-semitic comments, sexual misconduct and degrading his female coworkers. The supervisor also reported Martínez to UT's Office of Inclusion and Equity, or OIE.
The lawsuit states that the supervisor's accusations are baseless and "entirely false." After eight months of interviews and investigations, OIE declared the supervisor's allegations against Martinez as false, according to the lawsuit.
The lawsuit states that based on the evidence, "it is clear that (the supervisor's) actions constitute retaliation against him for engaging in a protected activity" and that the supervisor hindered and undermined Martínez's work on the committee.
Martínez is seeking an injunction prohibiting UT from engaging in unlawful practices, "additional equitable relief as may be appropriate such as a raise to parity with White comparators, promotion, front pay, and court costs," attorneys fees and additional damages.
Austonia has reached out to UT for comment.
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🗓 All weekend
Check out this highly anticipated art exhibition with illuminated art along Waller Creek. Tickets are free and the event includes food vendors, dazzling lights, live music, and hands-on activities
All weekend 6 p.m - 10 p.m | 📍Waterloo Park
This iconic holiday tradition lights up for the first time this holiday season starting this weekend! Reserve your spot for an enchanting light and sound performance, delicious hot cocoa, sweet treats, and some overall fun with your friends or family. The show runs till January 6th.
6 p.m and 9 p.m | 📍Mozart's Coffee Roasters - 3825 Lake Austin Blvd, Austin, TX 78703
This fitness event is free and open to the public. Get your morning started right with a "Fitness in the park" class for kickboxing! The class will be led by certified instructors and is a great way to get a cardio workout in while also honing your self-defense skills.
10 a.m - 11 a.m | 📍 Metz Park
Support local LBGTQ+ and female artists at this outdoor market with over 150 vendors. Get your holiday shopping out of the way at this event, with vendors for food trucks, handmade goods, raffles, hands on workshops and activities, and more.
Did someone say cheese?! If you're like me and always willing to get your hands on a bowl of mac and cheese, then this event is for you. Check out the Mac and Cheese festival happening this weekend to decide which vendor has. the best mac and cheese for yourself, and enjoy the bar with creative cocktails while you're at it. Tickets start at $45.
11 a.m - 3 p.m | 📍Lantana Place - 7415 Southwest Parkway