In what's become one of the uglier marketer exits in recent memory, L'Oréal USA has fired back strongly at a former vice president of digital marketing who sued the company last month alleging race, sex and disability discrimination.
The answer to the lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in New York on Friday, cites social media and text messages from the once fast-rising executive that the company says indicate she hates white people, threatened colleagues and publicly derided L'Oréal. It refers to one social-media post in which the former employee, Amanda Johnson, speaks of "hating white people," and another post that "racist British muthafuckas hated [Harry and Meghan's] ceremony."
The filing goes on: "She had brazenly posted about L'Oréal being, colloquially, a 'POS' ['piece of sh#@'] company and tweeting about how she gave 'minimal f*cks' about work."
The company also cites threatening texts to and about subordinates and peers, including one in which Johnson allegedly says about a colleague that she was "about to crawl so far up [his] ass that he will think I fuc%ing live in his small intestines[.] Don't you even dare think of coming for me. I will f-ing destroy you[.]"
In her lawsuit, Johnson alleged that her boss held "sex-fueled parties" on business trips, and at one point asking her to recruit junior employees to join (which she refused). She claims her boss once watched porn during a meeting as well. The suit also details a confrontation Johnson had with a fellow vice president in which she felt threatened. She attributes that colleague's behavior, and her firing, to race discrimination, and says the stress led to depression and anxiety.
However, L'Oréal denies these allegations and says the complaints about her boss and colleague weren't raised until after she was fired. When the company investigated, no one, including people identified as witnesses, corroborated her "outlandish claims," the answer says.
L'Oréal is asking the court to dismiss the suit and award it compensation for legal costs.