It is certainly shocking to hear about such ignorance and bigotry in the 21st century.
I also commend you for wanting to take a stand and stop this conduct from continuing.
Prior to jumping into a class action, a few issues come to mind. First, approximately, how many RNs are African American at this hospital, if you know?; Have you spoken with these other nurses about the discrimination?; For how long has the discrimination been going on?; for how long were you employed there?; did you leave because of the racial discrimination or was there another reason?; did you or any of the other nurses complain in writing to the hospital?; if so, who were the complaints made to?; are these RNs part if a labor union?, if so, were grievances ever filed, if you know?; and do you have a list of the proposed class of RNs.
When you get a chance to answer my questions, I'll do my best to get back with you right away with suggestions with proceeding forward.
HIDEN, ROTT & OERTLE, LLP
Please be advised that the advice provided does not create any attorney/client relationship; that due to the various state laws that the information provided is a general overview of work comp law, which might not be applicable to you, based upon the laws of your state. We will not file anything on your behalf nor protect any statute of limitations which might arise and recommend that you IMMEDIATELY consult legal counsel for advice.
A class action is a mechanism that allows the Court to efficiently address common complaints against the same defendant. Certain criteria the Court will look to will be the typicality and commonality of the complaint, the numerosity (number of people it effects) and that all the plaintiffs are similary situated. The case can proceed as an individual case or multi-plaintiff litigation, rather than a class action, depending on the circumstances. You should speak with a firm, such as ours (800) 910-0529, that provides free confidential consultations. Our firm only takes these matters on a contigency basis, so we only receive money if we win your case. Since some of your complaints are discrimination based you should speak with an attorney as soon as possible, because your rights to file certain notices are time sensitive. I wish you the best.
Please note by answering this question there is no attorney-client relationship formed. I am not your attorney. Nothing I said in this reply can or should be relied on. In order to rely on counsel's advise you must retain that attorney and receive representation or an official opinion letter. This is neither and meant to be for general informational purposes. Your case has specific nuances that goes beyond what you wrote and what I answered and you must speak directly with counsel to advise you of your rights.
Initiating, certifying, and maintaining a class action lawsuit requires specialized legal expertise and knowledge. You should find an experienced attorney who has handled these types of claims. If the case appears viable as a class action, you can file it as such and petition the court for certification of the class. If it does not appear that a class action would be viable, you may still have an individual cause of action against the employer.
You can start by contacting the Minnesota Department of Human Rights to report your discrimination claims and to preserve your rights. The Department can investigate, can impose sanctions and can force the employer to change its practices. You also may file a claim under Federal law, but if you start the claim with the Minnesota Department you will preserve your Federal rights as well. You can then work entirely with the Department, or retain a private attorney to handle your claim.