The Tuscaloosa Chapter of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) is planning a weekend protest against the Tuscaloosa VA Medical Center for what is said to be unfair hiring and promotion practices.

According to those familiar with the case, some employees with advanced degrees believe they were passed up for certain promotions in favor of management appointing less credentialed personnel to supervisory positions over those with more education.

It is also said that the qualifications for promotion are always changing.

“When I first started working at the VA, we were pushed to obtain more education to be considered for various positions,” one complainant said. “Once we got our degrees, they said we needed more experience. Now, which one is it?"

Among the list of concerns is an alleged statement by one person in a leadership position, who is accused of telling people of color that they could be his slaves and another person is said to have referred to clients of color as monkeys.

Representatives from the SCLC said they have evidence to prove these event occurred and that for employees to suffer such activity is reprehensible.

“We don’t have to take this, and we’re not going to!”

The group plans to gather at the McAbee Activity Center on Sunday, Nov. 1 at 1:30 p.m., and they will begin marching at 2:00 p.m.

This event was strategically planned for that time so those who aren’t required to work weekends will be available to take part in the protest.

The SCLC encourages participants to wear their face coverings and to practice social distancing during the protest.

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