Former Safelite employees, Mauro and Christina Castillo, have filed two separate complaints alleging discrimination against the company in the U.S. District Court, in the Northern District of California.
Christina Castillo is an individual with a disability, according to court documents, who was employed in an inventory control position by Safelite from April 2007 to December 2007. She and Mauro Castillo are married.
“On July 14, 2009, defendants unlawfully terminated plaintiff Christina Castillo from her inventory control position,” her attorney says in the court document.
Court papers filed by Christina Castillo say she had seizures at work during two different periods. When she returned after the second incident, she provided a doctor’s notice to general manager, Max McDonald.
“McDonald then instructed plaintiff Christina Castillo to go home and informed her that Human Resources had stated plaintiff should not come back until she was seizure-free,” her attorney says.
“On or about February 12, 2008, plaintiff Christina Castillo returned to work with a doctor’s note stating that she would take her medications faithfully but that a guarantee of no future seizures ‘would be impossible for any doctor to write … on any patient with epilepsy,’” according to court documents.
After this time, her attorney says she was sent home on multiple occasions because she “didn’t look well.”
“In or around March 2009, defendants sent plaintiff Christina Castillo a final written warning for absenteeism, based largely on leaves defendants forced her to take,” her attorney says.
In May 2009, Christina Castillo had further medical issues and her husband, Mauro Castillo, who also worked for Safelite, provided the company with medical records, according to court documents. She says Safelite informed her that her Family Medical Act leave would end July 13, 2009 and she was unable to return by that date. Safelite terminated her employment.
She seeks injunctive and declaratory relief, compensatory damages, punitive damages, lost wages and benefits, front pay, and attorneys’ fees and costs.
Her husband has also filed a discrimination lawsuit after he was terminated by Safelite. He alleges “discrimination based on association with a person with a disability in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act. (“ADA”) and California’s Fair Employment and Housing Act (“FEHA”), race and national origin discrimination in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act (“Title VII”) and FEHA, and retaliation in violation of Title VII and FEHA.”
He was employed as a delivery truck driver for Safelite from June 2007 until he was terminated in July 2010, his attorney says.
Soon after his wife filed a charge of discrimination with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Mauro Castillo says his supervisors Leeann Mays and Andrew Lowry began “treating him differently.”
“Most notably, his hours were cut and he was called in for meetings at which he was asked about Ms. Castillo’s claim,” his attorney says. “For example, during one meeting Elena Mafnas asked plaintiff why Ms. Castillo was suing the company. Plaintiff stated that the dispute was between Ms. Castillo and the company and did not involve him.”
Mauro Castillo also alleges some of the employees made racially discriminatory remarks. Mauro is a Latino man of Guatemalan origin, according to the court documents.
“Plaintiff submitted a written complaint to general manager Max McDonald and his district manager Nick Tsolis. The complaint discussed a picker incident and the fact that [another employee] made racially derogatory comments by calling Latino customers ‘stupid Mexicans,’” the attorney says.
Approximately one week after the written complaint, his hours were cut from 8 to 4-6 hours per day, says his attorney.
He seeks injunctive and declaratory relief, compensatory damages, punitive damages, lost wages and benefits, front pay and attorneys’ fees and costs, as well as other appropriate relief as determined by this court.
Safelite had not yet responded to the complaints at press time.
To read Christina Castillo’s complaint, click here.
To read Mauro Castillo’s complaint, click here.