Johnson v. Mashantucket Pequot Gaming Enterprise
Sufficient Evidence Exists That Boss Failed To Report Drinking
Native American Law | Labor and Employment | Hiring/Firing
- Mashantucket Pequot Court of Appeals
- Feb 05 2014 (Date Decided)
- Bigler, J.
A supervisor may be discharged, if the supervisor allegedly fails to report that a subordinate drinks when he is on duty. On May 21, 2011, a customer allegedly offered a Foxwoods Casino worker $20,000, if he drank on a blackjack game. Allegedly, Daric Johnson, who supervised the worker, did not report that the worker drank. Although Johnson denied that he actually observed his co-worker drink, the Mashantucket Pequot Gaming Enterprise discharged Johnson. The Board of Review upheld the discharge, after it considered Johnson’s claims and the surveillance tapes. In his appeal to the tribal court, Johnson claimed that he is a Native American and that the Native American preference officer was not informed about the decision to discharge, as required by the disciplinary and performance improvement policy. The Mashantucket Pequot Tribal Court reversed and reinstated Johnson. The Mashantucket Pequot Gaming Enterprise objected that Johnson failed to timely raise the issue, for consideration by the Board of Review. An employee may not raise a new claim on appeal to the tribal court. "Failure to raise alleged noncompliance with the Performance Improvement Policy," wrote the Mashantucket Pequot Court of Appeals, "meant that evidence was not developed regarding such claim, presentation of countervailing evidence, or cross-examination of witnesses." The issue of whether the Mashantucket Pequot Gaming Enterprise complied with the disciplinary and performance improvement policy was not preserved for appeal. Sufficient evidence existed to support the Board of Review’s conclusion that Johnson failed to report a subordinate who consumed alcohol, in violation of the standards of conduct and the disciplinary policy. The Mashantucket Pequot Court of Appeals reversed and affirmed the decision to discharge.