NASCAR Settles Harassment Suit Out Of Court

Jay W Pennell writes and reports that NASCAR has settled a $225 million lawsuit with a former technical inspector.

Avoiding a potentially long and drawn-out public trial, NASCAR has settled a $225 million lawsuit with former Nationwide Series official Mauricia Grant. The former technical inspector filed suit against NASCAR in June of 2008, alleging she was subjected to racial discrimination and sexual harassment while serving as an official.

Settled in mediation in New York on December 3, terms of the settlement remain confidential.

“We’re glad to have the case settled on mutually acceptable terms,” NASCAR spokesman Ramsey Poston explained in a statement. “NASCAR remains dedicated to maintaining a professional work environment for all employees at all times, and we wish Ms. Grant well in her future endeavors.”

The African-American woman filed suit in June of this year alleging 23 specific accounts of sexual harrassment and 34 incidents of racial and gender discrimination, claiming she was called “Nappy Headed Mo” and “Queen Sheba” by her fellow officials. Grant believed she was threatened by an official who specifically made references to the Ku Klux Klan.

Grant also claimed in the suit she was the victim of sexual advances by some officials. Taking those advances even further, Grant described that two of her fellow officials went as far as exposing themselves to her.

NASCAR took action after the complaint was filed, conducting twenty-seven interviews in Kentucky in June. Out of those twenty-seven testimonies, two officials? Tom Knox and Bud Moore ? were ultimately fired for the incident.

Throughout this entire ordeal, NASCAR has fought to maintain its integrity, claiming every employee has the opportunity to file a complaint about any form of discrimination or harassment. Grant claims she attempted to file a complaint, but when Nationwide Series director Joe Balash failed to listen to her complaints.

The former official claims that two weeks after bringing the issue up with Balash, she was reprimanded for her actions by NASCAR’s human resources director and that she was fired not long after.

With the announcement of the resolution, both parties are now able to pick up their pieces and move on.