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Press Release 05-04-2023

EEOC Sues LM Wind Power for Race Harassment and Retaliation

Employer Allowed Racial Harassment and Threats Against Black Employee, Federal Agency Charges

GRAND FORKS, N.D. – LM Wind Power Blades, Inc, a wind turbine blade manufacturer, violated federal law when it subjected an African American employee to a racially hostile work environment and then retaliated against him for complaining, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a lawsuit filed May 4, 2023.

According to the EEOC’s lawsuit, the African American employee was the target of sustained racial hostility from white employees and supervisors, which included racial slurs and threats of violence. White co-workers referred to the employee using the N-word, described him as a “monkey” on social media, and tagged him in online posts discussing white power. A white supervisor threatened to “slap the black off” the employee, and, when challenged, said he wished to hang him from a bridge or drag him behind a truck. Despite the employee’s frequent complaints, LM Wind Power failed to meaningfully discipline the harassers, and instead allowed the abusive conditions to continue. Eventually, LM Wind Power fired the employee in retaliation for his complaints.

Such alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits race-related harassment and retaliation. The EEOC filed suit in U.S. District Court for the District of North Dakota (Civil Action No. 3:23-cv-086) after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process.  

“No person should have to endure hateful racial slurs and threats of violence as the price of coming to work,” said Greg Gochanour, regional attorney for the EEOC’s Chicago District Office. “Federal discrimination laws make it clear that workplace harassment is illegal, and employers are responsible for stopping it. It is imperative that complaints of harassment be taken seriously and addressed without delay.”

Diane Smason, the acting district director in the EEOC’s Chicago office, added, “Title VII prohibits both racial harassment and retaliation against its victims. The EEOC is committed to vigorous enforcement of federal anti-discrimination law and will not tolerate retaliation against employees who oppose these illegal acts.”

LM Wind is an affiliate of General Electric and claims to have facilities in nine countries across four continents.

For more information on race and color discrimination, please visit For more information on harassment, please visit

The EEOC's Chicago District Office is charged with enforcing federal employment discrimination laws in Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Iowa. 

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