A black man in Florida who was denied a tanning parlor last year after he applied for a job at a local salon has filed a lawsuit claiming he was fired because he didn’t have enough time to make a decision on his employment.
“This is the first lawsuit that I am aware of in which a client of mine was discriminated against on the basis of his race,” Scott Todman, an attorney for the plaintiff, said in a statement.
“This case is important because it demonstrates that if a person has been discriminated against by a business owner on the grounds of race, it is even more important that he or she can apply for a business license at a later date and obtain employment.”
The plaintiff’s lawsuit, filed in federal court in Orlando, Florida, alleges that the owner of the spa in the town of Boca Raton denied him a tannery license in July 2014 because of his African-American ethnicity.
Todmann said he applied in February 2015 and was turned down.
He said he eventually applied again in June.
Todman is seeking damages for his attorney fees and the $200 a day he was required to spend to hire a tanner, a lawyer for the spa told ESPN.
The lawsuit also alleges that an employee of the same salon who applied for the job said the owner was concerned that Todmen was a felon.
The man also said he was told that Toda had been arrested and that Todo’s “southern accent” made him a suspect, according to the lawsuit.
Toda denied any racial bias, according a statement released by his company.