Former city parks employee claimed he was fired for opposing discriminatory practices against disabled citizens who used the parks, but he could not state a cause of action based on the California Fair Housing & Employment Act since that statute does not protect employees against retaliation for opposing discriminatory practices against non-employee customers or clients. Summary judgment was properly entered against a city parks employee who was laid off in a departmental reorganization and then not re-hired to any available position. The FEHA protects employees against retaliation for opposing practices that the employees reasonably think violate the FEHA. Gov. Code 12940(h). Here, however, the plaintiff employee claimed that the department retaliated against him because he opposed practices that he thought discriminated against disabled and other protected citizens who used or might use the park department’s services. Since discrimination against non-employee customers or clients does not violate the FEHA, the employee could not state a viable FEHA retaliation claim.
California Court of Appeal, First District, Division 5 (Jones, P.J.); November 9, 2016 (partial publication); 2016 WL 6610280