New York, NY – Renowned civil rights and personal injury attorney Ben Crump in partnership with Stowell & Friedman, this week filed a lawsuit on behalf of Anthony Fletcher against Morgan Stanley & Co., one of the world’s largest financial services firms, alleging a longstanding pattern of systemic racial discrimination.
“The pattern is clear that Morgan Stanley has deep and wide institutional bias against Black people,” Crump said. “We have amassed compelling evidence that Morgan Stanley is reluctant to hire Black employees; it doesn’t believe people want Black financial advisors, and it doesn’t think Black people have money to invest.”
The lawsuit, on behalf of Fletcher, a Black recruiter, alleges that Morgan Stanley has a history of intentional discrimination against Black employees that led to their underrepresentation in financial advisor, management, and executive roles. Although Fletcher sourced more than 200 highly qualified diverse candidates over seven years, Morgan Stanley only hired 16. And the brokerage pigeonholed Fletcher, who is Black, to find only “diverse” candidates, who were paid less and hired into lower roles.
The lawsuit also alleges Morgan Stanley denied Fletcher access to standard tools for his job, and hired candidates he sourced behind his back to avoid paying appropriate fees. When he reported the discrimination he and his candidates faced, his contract was terminated.
The lawsuit is the latest in a series of discrimination lawsuits that paint a picture of a brokerage plagued by rampant race discrimination, alleging that despite Morgan Stanley’s public commitments to diversity and inclusion, the company has failed to address significant disparities in compensation and promotions for African American employees, including:
⦁ Only about 1% of 18,000 tenured Morgan Stanley Financial Advisors are Black.
⦁ Morgan Stanley pays White financial advisors over 30% more than African American financial advisors.
⦁ Black financial advisors are segregated and excluded from lucrative partnerships/teams of financial advisors.
⦁ White FAs serve on the firm’s lucrative and important teams and partnerships at double the rate of African American financial advisors
⦁ Black trainees suffer attrition rates of nearly 80%
Attorney Suzanne E. Bish of Stowell & Friedman, Ltd. said, “The evidence in this case demonstrates that Morgan Stanley’s promises to promote diversity and inclusion are nothing more than empty rhetoric. We intend to prove that the company has systematically discriminated against Mr. Fletcher and African American employees, and fostered an environment that perpetuates racial disparities.”
In addition to seeking compensatory and punitive damages, the lawsuit calls for reforms to address the discriminatory practices at Morgan Stanley and create a more equitable work environment.
About Ben Crump Law
Nationally renowned civil rights and personal injury attorney Ben Crump and his team of attorneys at Ben Crump Law are dedicated to seeking justice for those who have experienced discrimination, wrongful death, and civil rights violations. With a focus on civil rights, environmental justice, and more, Ben Crump Law is committed to advocating for the disenfranchised and fighting for equal rights and opportunities for all. For more information, please visit https://bencrump.com/.
About Stowell & Friedman, Ltd.
Stowell & Friedman, Ltd. is a boutique law firm that specializes in civil rights, employment discrimination, and complex litigation. The firm has extensive experience in class action lawsuits and has a strong track record of success in fighting for justice on behalf of those who have experienced discrimination in the workplace. For more information, please visit https://www.stowellfriedman.com/.