In the largest public settlement of an individual discrimination case filed in Hawai‘i, Mr. Varady represents Charles Daniels, an African American, who alleged he was subjected to racial harassment, threats of harm and retaliation, while Mr. Daniels was employed by Lockheed Martin as an avionics electrician, upgrading military aircraft at military bases. Lockheed Martin agreed to pay $2.5 million to Mr. Daniels to settle his case. Lockheed Martin, the worlds largest defense contractor, operates facilities across the nation, including Hawaii.

The EEOC's written investigation determined that Mr. Daniels was subjected to racist comments and threats due to his race for a period of nearly one year, including threats of violence made after he initiated an investigation, using Lockheed Martins internal procedures. The lawsuit, filed in United States District Court for the District of Hawaii, (Daniels v. Lockheed Martin, CV05-0496 DAE/LEK) alleged that Lockheed Martin failed to take appropriate remedial actions when Mr. Daniels complained of the harassment; instead, it alleged, the company retaliated against Mr. Daniels for filing complaints of discrimination.

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"Mr. Daniels' experience shows that we have far to go before we can declare the battle against ignorance and bigotry is won, said attorney Carl Varady. Like Rosa Parks, and a host of others, Mr. Daniels demonstrated great courage, by refusing to ignore or run away from abusive and threatening circumstances that would offend and terrify anyone. Charles refused buckle under tremendous backlash at work, or during the two and a-half years of arduous litigation it took to bring this case to conclusion.

Lockheed Martin has an anti-discrimination policy that states the company has zero-tolerance for discrimination or harassment of any kind and assures that complaints of discrimination will be kept confidential to prevent retaliation. Mr. Daniels’s complaint alleged that he was subjected to threats and retaliation after he followed Lockheed Martins zero tolerance complaint procedures to report that he was being called nigger, shit and turd, by his co-workers on a daily basis. Mr. Daniels also testified that he was impeded while working and even having his work sabotaged.

Lockheed Martins zero-tolerance policy is just a piece of paper unless the people implementing it understand it, understand why it’s important and, especially, how important confidentiality is to any investigation. Here, Mr. Daniels testified that the corporate policy was not implemented in a way that kept his complaint confidential. Instead, he stated it did just the opposite, exposing him to escalated verbal abuse and threats of violence that included tying a knot and making him disappear on remote Whidbey Island, said Varady. "When a harassment complaint is not kept confidential, the problem often does disappear, when the targeted employee quits to escape escalating threats and abuse. When an employee feels his or her safety is being threatened, it takes uncommon bravery to insist that a corporation live up to its stated policies. I am proud to have had the opportunity to represent this brave individual, and help Mr. Daniels bring this case to a successful conclusion," said Varady.

Mr. Daniels commented on the settlement, saying, "President John F. Kennedy told the American people, it ought to be possible, in short for every American to enjoy the privileges of being American without regard to race or color. In short for every American to have the right to be treated as he would wish to be treated, as one would wish his children be treated.' But, as my complaint alleges, I was subjected to constant racial slurs, harassment, threats of violence and retaliation which left me afraid of my safety, depressed, humiliated and subjected to reprisals. Im grateful to be able to put this case to rest, even if the memories of what occurred are still fresh in my mind. I am also grateful for Carl Varadys vigorous and effective representation of me throughout this ordeal. It was truly a David versus Goliath battle and I could not have succeeded without Mr. Varady's help."

During the course of the litigation Lockheed Martin was sanctioned three times by the Court for refusing to follow the Courts orders to produce documents and witnesses.

The settlement agreement expressly stated that Lockheed Martin does not admit any wrongdoing or any of the allegations by entering into the agreement.