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In North Carolina and throughout the country, racism is alive and well in many workplaces. This is not only true for any unconscious bias a person may have for people of other backgrounds but also includes abusive behaviors like threats, the use of racial epithets and open display of racist symbols.

Employment law professionals identify a disturbing trend among the workplace racial discrimination cases that find their way into a courtroom. In many cases, the employer knew what was happening and either took part in the discrimination or did nothing to stop it.

The CEO of the Society of Human Resource Management recently explained that for many people, the workplace is the only place they encounter people of other races and backgrounds regularly. The CEO believes this is one reason to explain the many instances of racial discrimination in the workplace.

Anyone with thoughts that this behavior is waning or is “not so bad” needs only to look at a few of the following examples to get a clearer view of the problem. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission found a noose at a foundry in Ohio. The EEOC also determined that top officials for the company hurled insults of a racist nature toward employees.

In another case, a grocery store owner in Georgia regularly subjected African-American employees to racial slurs, comparisons to monkeys and other racially derogatory comments daily. In another workplace, the environment at a mattress manufacturer included an open display of nooses, KKK headwear and racist jokes.

The examples are many, and all of them lead to the conclusion that racism still plays a large role in American society. Employers can only prevent this ill from entering the work environment by taking decisive action whenever racism rears its head. This prevention starts with the drafting of good policy. Strong enforcement of this policy is then necessary by the employer and members of the management team.

Discrimination in the workplace can leave victimized workers feeling frustrated and alone. Many times, workers who face discrimination in the workplace keep their suffering to themselves for fear that speaking out may cost them their job. Individuals who suffer workplace discrimination may find the relief they need from speaking to an employment law attorney.