Former Seattle city employee sues city over “racially hostile work environment” due to his race. Plot twist: he’s white.


SEATTLE, WA- Fox News reports that a former employee for the city of Seattle has filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the city, alleging he was a victim of anti-White discrimination and claiming he was exposed to a “racially hostile work environment.”

The claimant, Joshua Diemert, worked for the city’s Department of Human Services between 2013 to 2021, employed as a program intake representative.

The suit was filed on Nov. 16 and named the city, as well as Mayor Bruce Harrell, alleging he was constantly “belittled and harassed at work” due to his skin color, while further alleging he was denied advancement opportunities and retaliated against all due solely to the color of his skin, Fox said.

According to the suit, the plaintiff claims the anti-White culture he worked under came about due to Seattle’s Race and Social Justice Initiative (RSJI), which was designed to “end institutionalized racism and race-based disparities in City government,” the city’s website reads.

According to the suit, Diemert alleges the fact he was White was an “albatross around his neck” throughout his career in Seattle, and complained that discrimination became “increasingly pervasive and hostile” as his career evolved.

The Daily Caller said Diemert alleged he was forced to attend “race-based training sessions, urged to join ‘race-based affinity groups’ and accused of benefiting from ‘white privilege.’”

Diemert is seeking a declaration that Seattle’s policies and practices violated the Equal Protection Clause under the 14th Amendment, as well as Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. He is also seeking damages of up to $300,000.

The monetary portion of the suit would serve as compensation for salary lost “as a result of being discriminatorily denied promotions” as well as for “mental pain and suffering.”

“The City treated Mr. Diemert with hostility based on his race when they racially segregated staff meetings, offered and required race-based programming, promoted affinity groups, and maintained a commitment to making racial distinctions among City staff,” Pacific Legal foundation attorney Laura D’Agostino, Diemert’s lawyer, told the Daily Caller News Foundation (DCNF).

“Mr. Diemert complained about these things to the City through his managers but they failed to stop it.”

“The city’s refusal to reasonably address and stop the race-based hostility violates the Equal Protection Clause, which protects Mr. Diemert’s right to a workplace free of racial harassment,” she continued.

The lawsuit further alleges the plaintiff was “subjected to hostile interaction with colleagues,” the DCNF  quoted the lawsuit as reading.

Moreover, emails from his colleagues referred to Diemert as “some asshole” and the “reincarnation of the people that shot native Americans from trains, rounded up jews for the camps, hunted down gypsies in Europe and runaway slaves in America.”

They continued berating him and said his concerns should be dismissed, because he would “just come back with more stupidity,” and that someone should “get a guy to swing by when Josh is in the restroom and beat him bloody,” the suit continued.

A workshop Diemert was forced to attend in 2019, “Undoing Institutional Racism,” claimed “white people are like the devil,” “racism is in white people’s DNA,” and further accused white people of being “cannibals.”

“When Mr. Diemert objected, the facilitators used their platform to belittle and attack Mr. Diemert,” the lawsuit continues. “Other coworkers that were present continued the mockery in the workplace and made Mr. Diemert the office pariah. Mr. Diemert’s workers called him a ‘white supremacist.’”

A 2020 training, called “Theory of Change,” required Diemert to rate how well his department adhered to standards found in a document titled “Characteristics of White Supremacy.”

“Treating and devaluating workers based on race violates equality before the law,” D’Agostino said. “All people should be treated as individuals with dignity and evaluated by the content of their character, not the color of their skin.”

The suit continued:

“His supervisors and other colleagues continually dismissed his concerns over a period of years and claimed he could not be a victim of racism and discrimination because he possessed ‘white privilege,’” it claimed. “And he was denied opportunities for advancement by the City based on his racial and ethnic identity.”

“In June 2020, the Office of Civil Rights emailed Mr. Diemert stating that it was hosting a training on ‘Internalized Racial Superiority,’ and that this was ‘specifically targeted for White employees,’” the lawsuit claims.

“The training focused on examining white employees’ ‘complicity in the system of white supremacy’ and how white employees ‘internalize and reinforce’ racism.”

“The goal of the training was to turn these employees into white ‘accomplices’ who would interrupt the ‘whiteness’ that they saw in their colleagues,” it added.

Despite repeatedly reporting incidents of discrimination to his employer, the City of Seattle took no action. Further, medical documents submitted by Diemert which claimed the RSJI training negatively impacted his mental health were ignored. That led to Diemert eventually quitting his job.

The Daily Caller News Foundation reached out to the city’s Human Services Department, who referred the outlet to the City Attorney, which didn’t respond to the DCNF.

The communications director for the Seattle City Attorney’s Office, Anthony Derrick, admitted the office was aware of the lawsuit in an email to Fox News Digital, however.

“Our office has is [sic] aware of this complaint and we are currently reviewing the allegations against the City,” Derrick told Fox News Digital in an email. “As we are unable to comment on ongoing litigation, the City Attorney’s Office has no further statement at this time.”

Want to make sure you never miss a story from Law Enforcement Today?  With so much “stuff” happening in the world on social media, it’s easy for things to get lost.  

Make sure you click “following” and then click “see first” so you don’t miss a thing!  (See image below.)  Thanks for being a part of the LET family!
Facebook Follow First
Submit a Correction
Related Posts