Back in 2013, Brooklyn resident Rasean Tate used to work for a catering company called Levy Restaurant Holdings that does a lot of work for the Barclays Center. As part of his job, the 28-year-old was regularly asked to set up buffets in the locker rooms inside of the Brooklyn Nets home arena. But prior to a game on February 22, 2013, Tate—who is gay—claims he was subjected to a series of gay slurs that were made by members of the Houston Rockets. And as a result, he says that he eventually ended up losing his job when he complained to his manager. He is now suing both Levy's and the Rockets.
"When the plaintiff's back was turned to defendant Rockets players, he began to hear laughter and taunting voices saying 'get this f----- out of here!' and 'He's trying to catch a sneaky-peeky!'" it says in the lawsuit that he filed recently. "These series of comments were repeated a number of times by defendant Rockets players and staff. Plaintiff could hear defendant Rockets players overlapping voices and laughter."
According to the lawsuit, a Nets representative who allegedly witnessed and heard the Rockets players taunting Tate asked him to "just leave" the locker room and promised that he would handle the situation. But nothing happened, so a few days later, Tate filed an official complaint with his manager. Over the course of the next few weeks, though, Tate realized that he was no longer being assigned to set up food in the locker rooms or in VIP areas at events. And before long, his hours and pay were both cut and he was later let go from his job without pay. So now, he wants Levy's and the Rockets to pay him because of what happened.
The Nets and the Barclays Center were not named in Tate's lawsuit. But it's worth noting that Jason Collins, the first openly-gay player to take part in an NBA game, is now running with the Nets. Stay tuned to see what becomes of this lawsuit.
[via New York Post]