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Appellate Division Finds Single Anti-Semitic Email Insufficient to Create Hostile Work Environment

Authors: Evan J. Shenkman (Morristown), Ryan T. Warden (Morristown)

Published Date: April 4, 2012

Shain v. Hel Limited, et al., 2012 WL 671922 (App. Div. Mar. 2, 2012): The Appellate Division affirmed the dismissal of a plaintiff’s hostile work environment claim under the NJLAD. The plaintiff, employed as a salesman, discovered alleged anti-Semitic comments about the plaintiff contained in a single email between a supervisor to another supervisor, and alleged that the email created a hostile work environment. The Appellate Division found the comments were not sufficiently “severe” because: the comments were not made to the plaintiff’s face directly; the plaintiff only became aware of the email after he retrieved an email through the company database; the comment was not made by the plaintiff’s ultimate supervisor; and the supervisor who made the comment was promptly reprimanded and apologized to the plaintiff for the comment.

Note: this article was published in the April 2012 issue of the New Jersey eAuthority.

Evan J. Shenkman  (Morristown)

Evan J. Shenkman
Evan J. Shenkman is a member of Ogletree Deakins’ Knowledge Management Department, serving as the firm’s Senior Knowledge Management Counsel and Research Manager. In his role, Mr. Shenkman is responsible creating processes, practices, and software to allow firm attorneys to work smarter, faster, and more in sync; creating internal and client-facing collaborative tools; and managing the firm's team of Knowledge Management Counsel and the firm's Legal Researchers. He also manages...

Ryan T. Warden  (Morristown)

Ryan T. Warden
Ryan T. Warden defends employers against all types of employment-related claims, including allegations of discrimination, retaliation and harassment. Ryan is a member of the Firm’s Class Action Group and Wage and Hour Group and has extensive experience defending employers against class, collective and single plaintiff actions arising out of alleged violations of state and federal wage and hour laws. Ryan has defended clients in the retail, trucking and transportation and food service...