Former MBTA Green Line Driver Awarded $2.65 Million in Discrimination Suit

The MBTA says it was a love triangle gone bad.

Photo by Chris Devers on Flickr/Creative Commons

Photo by Chris Devers on Flickr/Creative Commons

A federal jury in Boston has awarded $2.65 million to a former Green Line driver who says she was the victim of racial discrimination when she was fired in 2013.

Michelle Dimanche said she had been subjected to “demeaning and insulting remarks” during her 13 years with the MBTA. “Defendants subjected Ms. Dimanche to racial harassment and discrimination,’’ her complaint, filed last year, read. “No legitimate or justifiable business reason existed to warrant termination.”

The MBTA argued that Dimanche’s termination came after a string of disciplinary actions. The grounds for her dismissal, the T’s lawyers said, were the culmination of a 16-year feud between Dimanche and another Haiti-American woman over the same man. The T also noted the Massachusetts Commission Against Discrimination’s dismissal of similar allegations upon reviewing her job performance and deeming it worthy of termination.

Dimanche was awarded $1.325 million in compensatory damages and $1.3 million in punitive damages in a verdict delivered October 20 and upheld Friday. A spokesperson for the MBTA told the Globe it will seek to overturn the verdict.