Diversity and inclusion programs are prevalent at both small and large-scale companies to encourage people of all genders, races, and ethnicities to apply for jobs. However, David Duvall claimed that his company terminated him to hire more diverse employees instead because he was a white man. So what does the company have to say after a judge awarded Duvall a hefty payday because he was fired for being a white man?
A Rundown Of The Court Case
In 2019, hospital executive David Duvall sued the North Carolina-based hospital system Novant Health, Inc. According to Duvall, the company terminated him as senior vice president of marketing and communications because of his race and sex.
In court documents obtained by People, Duvall also argued the termination came “without warning and without explanation.” Initially hired in 2013, Duvall was approaching his five-year anniversary at the company, which he also believed was another reason he was fired.
Duvall’s attorney, Luke Largess, pointed out that he was fired right before he would have been entitled to a larger severance package from Novant Health, Inc. Largess argued the company “purposely” fired Duvall to prevent him from becoming eligible for the higher severance.
Largress added that Duvall was terminated “without warning or cause as part of an intentional campaign to promote diversity in its management ranks.” According to Duvall’s complaint, he was replaced by a Black woman and a white woman, leading him to claim discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act.
What Did Novant Health, Inc. Say About The Case?
In the end, a federal jury awarded Duvall $10 million after the case showed his race and sex were “a motivating factor in Novant Health’s decision to terminate him.” However, Novant Health continues to deny Duvall’s allegations.
According to the company, Duvall was fired “due to his deficient performance, including his inability to communicate effectively before a group and the delegation of the critical duties of his position to his subordinates.”
Although Duvall and his attorney were “pleased” with the case’s outcome, Novant Health was just the opposite. “We are extremely disappointed with the verdict as we believe it is not supported by the evidence presented at trial,” a statement from the company read.
What Are The Next Steps For The Company?
“We will pursue all legal options, including appeal, over the next several weeks and months,” the statement continued. To conclude, Novant Health assured, “this verdict will not change Novant Health’s steadfast commitment to diversity, inclusion, and equity for all.”