A former Texans security coordinator filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission alleging that former general manager Brian Gaine targeted African-American employees for termination through his tenure.
“It appeared, and I believe, that he was targeting all minorities in leadership positions and was set to replace them with non-African-Americans. Which he did,” the former security coordinator, Jeff Pope, wrote in a discrimination complaint obtained by USA Today.
Pope was told the team would be dismissing him on May 8 because he didn't have a background in law enforcement, he wrote in the complaint.
Gaine was fired by the Texans last week after being hired in January 2018, but the team said his dismissal was not related to those allegations.
"We have just been made aware of Mr. Pope’s claim," the Texans said in a statement to the Houston Chronicle. "We do not comment on pending litigation. The Houston Texans do not tolerate personal or professional discrimination of any kind."
In the complaint, Pope, who is African American, says he and other employees of the same race were “being singled out/targeted.”
“In short, every African American in the building understood that not too many of us could congregate or be seen interacting with each other even during lunch because it did not look good to the powers that be,” Pope wrote in his complaint, according to USA Today. "I believe I was discriminated against and terminated on the basis of my race and color."
Pope's attorney said they tried to negotiate a fair severance package with the Texans, but the team decline to engage in the process.