Is e-mail comparing airport worker to cartoon character racist? - FOX 32 News Chicago

Wayne County Airport Authority employee says she received racist e-mail comparing her to a cartoon character

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Nyota Ellis says she was racially discriminated against Nyota Ellis says she was racially discriminated against
The photo in the email, Francine from the TV show Arthur The photo in the email, Francine from the TV show Arthur
Email subject: Take a look Email subject: Take a look
"See attached. I will explain later if you can't figure this out. =) " "See attached. I will explain later if you can't figure this out. =) "
"See attached. I will explain later if you can't figure this out. =) " "See attached. I will explain later if you can't figure this out. =) "
(WJBK) -

An employee of the Wayne County Airport Authority's real estate department says a co-worker sent a racist email about her.

Nyota Ellis says she caught wind the correspondence last week, which was also sent to executives along with other people.

The email is of a cartoon character with a short, brown bob, and may be recognized to some as the character Francine from the children's TV show Arthur.

"I knew immediately knew it was about me - I'm the only African American in that department," Ellis tells FOX 2's Andrea Isom. She also says she came to work with a new haircut that resembles the character's hairstyle and two hours later the email began circulating.

The subject of the email was 'Take a look' and included a message that reads, 'See attached. If you can't figure this out I'll explain later. =) '.

Ellis has filed a written complaint to human resources.

Rob Davis, the chief negotiator for AFSCME for the Wayne Co. Airport local, says: "It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out this individual's intent. This was a very racist joke in which he sent to other airport officials and they never at any point in time reported it or reprimanded this individual, and for her to have to find this particular unfair depiction of African Americans is totally unfair and will not be tolerated by the AFSCME union."

The Wayne County Airport Authority released this statement:


"The Airport Authority has a long-standing policy of not discussing personnel matters in public. That being said, WCAA takes any complaint of discrimination very seriously. The organization's values are posted through the workplace and they include: teamwork, accountability, customer service, integrity, employee respect and embrace diversity."

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