NEW YORK -- A former Major League Baseball employee accused the sport's business arm of fostering an environment in which anti-Asian hostility thrived.
Juri Morioka said in a multimillion-dollar lawsuit filed
Thursday in U.S. District Court in Manhattan that the hostilities
were evident while she worked for one year as an administrative
assistant in baseball's Broadcasting Department.
Morioka, a Japanese citizen, said she was told when she was
hired in February 2002 that her Japanese language skills and
familiarity with the Japanese culture would help baseball's
International Department deal with Japanese clients.
Yet, she said, she was repeatedly subjected until her May
termination to an "unreasonable, offensive and demeaning
anti-Japanese and anti-Asian hostility that pervaded the entire
She said one executive repeatedly referred to people of Japanese
ancestry with the term "Jap" or "Japs" and frequently said
Japanese clients were "stupid" or "a moron." She said another
once said, "I hate Japanese more than Koreans."
After she said the ethnic slurs made it difficult for her to
work, an executive she had complained about retaliated against her
and she was fired, the lawsuit alleged.
The lawsuit seeks $3.4 million in compensatory and punitive
damages, back pay and lost future income.
A telephone message left with a spokesman for Major League
Baseball was not immediately returned.