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USA Cricket – Terminated contractor files case against USA Cricket for ‘racial discrimination’

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in the middle of A protracted legal battle Regarding the general election postponed from 2020, USA Cricket now has a second lawsuit on its hands after Kirk Graves, whose role as independent contractor was terminated early last month, filed a lawsuit in US Federal Court against the national government body alleging “discrimination” Racist at work.

The lawsuit, filed on April 28 by Graves in the Northern District of California (U.S. Cricket is headquartered in San Francisco), seeks $2 million in total damages: $150,000 in economic damages for lost future wages; $350,000 in non-economic compensation for “stress and humiliation”; and $1.5 million in punitive damages.

“USA Cricket is aware of various details of a lawsuit brought by a former contractor against USA Cricket,” a spokesperson for USA Cricket told ESPNcricinfo in an emailed statement. “The individual is one of a number of contractors previously contracted by USA Cricket whose contracts have not recently been renewed. All allegations in the lawsuit are completely false and baseless, and USA Cricket denies and will vigorously defend them. The matter is currently under consideration in the hands of USA Cricket attorneys. We look forward to the timely dismissal of the case and will not provide any further comment at this time.”

Prior to USA Cricket, Greaves, a native of Barbados, served as Team Operations Manager for the Barbados Tridents for three seasons in the Caribbean Premier League from 2016 to 2018. He was also named Tournament Operations Manager for Global T20 Canada when it launched in 2018 and has worked In an operational role at the Rajasthan Royals during the 2019 IPL tournament, Graves claims that he was brought in by USA Cricket as an independent contractor for four months as Director of Cricket Operations starting in March 2021 with an initial wage of $5,000 per month and tasked with executing four domestic cricket tournaments .

Greaves claims that a verbal agreement was in place with then-CEO Ian Higgins to give him an offer to work full-time, on the condition of successful completion of the four domestic championships. However, Greaves was not subsequently made a full-time job offer and he claims that the budget allegedly intended for the role was instead repackaged as an increased salary offer for a white employee.

Among other allegations, Greaves stated that he was subjected to “a toxic work environment, unfair hiring practices, wage disparities, and discrimination.” Graves claims that he was the only black employee and also the only American citizen on the staff, and as such, he was set to diversify the management of USA Cricket. And it looks like Australians, Indians, New Zealanders and other non-Americans have benefited from the USA Cricket brand.”

Although their employment status is not considered full-time, USA Cricket currently has three other black men – all US citizens – serving in staff leadership roles affiliated with its national teams: John Aaron as the USA national team manager, and Kirk Higgins in the US USA men’s national team manager Kevin Darlington in the dual role of USA men’s national coach and USA U19 national team coach.

Greaves also alleges in the suit that he was humiliated after his role was reclassified from “cricket operations manager” to “events manager”, and that renaming his role “eliminated any element of black representation at the senior management level”, something he claims ” It was racially orchestrated and a violation of American law.” Greaves also writes that his employment status was that of a permanent employee but claims that his designation as an independent contractor is “indicative of bad faith and in violation of US labor laws.”

On March 28, USA Cricket Operations Director Richard Done sent a letter to Graves informing him that the independent contractor agreement – which was $6,500 for the last five months, $1,500 more than the original – had been terminated effective April 8 “based on a decision of the Cricket Committee”. . However, Graves claims to have received an email objecting to this from USA Cricket Board Member Srini Salver. In the email, which is attached in an exhibit as part of the lawsuit, Salver wrote to Graves that “the cricket committee has never recommended your termination” at any board meeting, but instead it was discussed during a conversation about budgets.

Silver allegedly wrote to Graves: “Neither budget approved, nor terminations.” Salver is one of the plaintiffs two members of the Board of Directors, along with Venu Pisike, in the ongoing legal suit brought against five other members of the United States Board of Directors and then CEO of USA Cricket Iain Higgins over the legality of allowing new members to put a vote in the case related to the 2020 election delay.

A hearing in Greaves’ suit has been scheduled for August 2.

Peter DellaPenna is the US correspondent for ESPNcricinfo @PeterDellaPenna

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