Black woman sues Marriott for racial discrimination over ‘no party policy’

An African American woman from California has filed a $300,000 lawsuit against the Marriott hotel chain, claiming she was required to sign a “no party policy” that white guests were not asked to sign.

Felicia Gonzales, 51, was allegedly told by the front desk clerk at the Residence Inn by Marriott Portland Downtown/Convention Center that all guests had to sign the policy, according to the lawsuit obtained by The Oregonian.

However, she says she later witnessed white guests being checked in without signing the same document.

“Having to sign a ‘NO PARTY’ Policy form did not feel right to Ms. Gonzales, so she went back to the front desk,” according to the lawsuit. “Ms. Gonzales observed as multiple Caucasian guests checked in. None of them were asked to sign a ‘NO PARTY’ Policy.”

Gonzales’s attorneys shared the two-page no party policy, which says it was established to inform all guests of noise limits and “not to insinuate any distrust in the ‘average’ guest.”

“No hotels want to have parties in them and we don’t want that type of business,” the policy read.

It also notes that guests are responsible for any missing items in their suites and damage caused to the hotel property by “invited or uninvited person(s).”

Originally from Portland, Gonzales later moved to California, the outlet reported. In January 2019, she made the 20-hour drive to visit her family and checked in at the hotel.

A Marriott Rewards member, Gonzales’s lawsuit states that she “had never had a problem or noise complaint at any other Marriott hotel she had ever stayed at.”

Her lawsuit, filed in the Multnomah County Circuit Court, seeks $300,000 for embarrassment, frustration, humiliation and “feelings of racial stigmatization.” 

A Marriott spokesman, Jeff Flaherty, told The Oregonian that the company doesn’t comment on pending lawsuits.

Tags Marriott Marriott hotels Oregon Portland Racial discrimination

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