Two U.S. Solar Firms Have Now Been Accused of Workplace Racism

(Bloomberg) -- Two residential solar companies have now been accused in separate lawsuits of discriminating against African American employees in warehouses.

Six former employees of New Jersey-based Momentum Solar sued the company Monday in federal court, saying it fostered “a work environment permeated with vile racism.” Last year, a former employee of Vivint Solar Inc., one of the country’s largest residential solar-panel installers, said in a lawsuit that he faced racial harassment at a warehouse in Sacramento, California.

In both suits, workers said they were subjected to racial epithets and harassment. Among many examples alleged in the complaint against Momentum, employees said supervisors used the “n-word.” The suit against Vivint, filed in California Superior Court, said white employees cordoned off their desks with cardboard boxes, with a sign saying "white only."

A lawyer for Momentum said in a statement that the suit was filed by “disgruntled” former employees and that the allegations had “no basis in law or fact.” Vivint Chief Executive Officer David Bywater said last year that he was “deeply disturbed” by the suit and that the company has a zero-tolerance policy for racial discrimination and harassment.

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