WASHINGTON — The Department of Justice today filed a lawsuit against DTI Associates Inc. (DTI), a Virginia-based service contractor, alleging violations of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA).
The complaint, filed in the U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Va., alleges that DTI violated USERRA by discharging an employee-Navy reservist when he returned from military service. The former employee had been mobilized in support of Operations Noble Eagle, Enduring Freedom, and Iraqi Freedom.
“This nation depends on our military reservists, and no member of our armed forces should ever be punished or discriminated against for answering the call of duty,” said Wan J. Kim, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division. “The filing of this lawsuit reflects the Department’s continuing commitment to fully protect our uniformed service members’ employment rights.”
Based in Arlington, Va., DTI provides engineering, technology and professional services as a contractor to government customers, including the U.S. Navy. Shortly after terminating the Navy reservist, DTI became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Haverstick Consulting Inc. In January 2006, the Navy awarded DTI a new, five-year, $49 million contract.
The Justice Department’s lawsuit was filed after the Veterans’ Employment and Training Service of the Department of Labor referred a complaint filed by the Navy reservist to the Justice Department upon completion of its investigation and unresolved settlement efforts.
The Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice was given authority over USERRA in 2004. Since that time, the Division has brought 14 USERRA complaints and resolved 13 USERRA claims on behalf of servicemembers, and filed the first-ever federal class action lawsuit under USERRA.
Additional information about USERRA can be found on the Justice Department Web site at the following link http://www.dol.gov/vets/programs/userra/main.htm.