Appeal from the United States District Court
for the Eastern District of Michigan at Detroit.
No. 2:15-cv-10525—David M. Lawson, District Judge.
Argued: March 15, 2017
Decided and Filed: April 12, 2017
Before: MERRITT, COOK, McKEAGUE, Circuit Judges.
McKEAGUE, Circuit Judge. Samuel Gompers, founder of the AFL, wrote that
“[w]herever trade unions are most firmly organized, there are the rights of the people most
respected.” SAMUEL L. GOMPERS, LABOR AND THE COMMON WELFARE (1919). But Gompers
wasn’t quite right if Tanganeka Phillips’s claims are true; she alleges that one of the largest
unions in North America discriminated against her on the basis of race. Specifically, she alleges
that UAW International created a hostile work environment, actionable under Title VII and the
Michigan Elliot-Larsen Civil Rights Act (ELCRA). The district court granted summary
judgment for the defendants on the basis that Phillips’s Title VII hostile work environment claim
can only be brought against an employer, not a union, and that UAW International was not
Phillips’s employer. We affirm on other grounds.