A single racial slur in the workplace may be enough to establish a lawsuit for harassment, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit ruled July 14.

Clarifying muddled precedent about what needs to be alleged for workplace discrimination claims to survive the pleadings stage, a three-judge panel of the circuit determined plaintiffs need to show that harassment is “severe or pervasive,” rather than “severe and pervasive.” The decision in Castleberry v. STI Group reversed a ruling from the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, which had dismissed the claims.

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