Black and Hispanic Workers Taunted With Nooses and Racial Slurs to Receive $1.9 Million From Aviation-Fueling Company

An aviation-fueling company has agreed to pay nearly $1.9 million to black and Hispanic workers who said they were taunted with hangman's nooses, racist cartoons and other racial slurs.

Allied Aviation Services Inc. did not admit wrongdoing, but it settled a lawsuit before it could go to trial in June.

The settlement will be paid to 15 current and former employees who worked at New York-based Allied's fueling station at Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport.

"This is a company that failed to recognize the red flags," said Suzanne Anderson, an attorney for the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which joined private attorneys in filing the lawsuit. "If you see a noose, you should react."

Black employees said whites forced them to ride in the back of company shuttle buses, and someone scrawled a slur on a tile in the men's room. A Hispanic worker charged that his boss displayed a racially insulting cartoon about the worker.

One of the former workers, Eric Mitchel, called the treatment of minorities "a modern-day lynching."

"We have endured a lot," he said. "We feel very good that we've been vindicated."

Although the lawsuit focused on DFW workers, lawyers said they received similar complaints from Allied workers at Kennedy, LaGuardia and Newark airports in the New York area.