A federal jury has ruled that "nigger" not a term of endearment.

A federal jury ruled that saying the “N-word” in the workplace — no matter the ethnicity of the person who uses it — is hostile and discriminatory, and not a term of endearment. The ruling clarifies what some have called a confusing double standard for years — that blacks can say the N-word with impunity, but if other races do, it’s blatant discrimination.

Jurors in Manhattan awarded $250,000 in damages and compensation last week to a black employment agency worker, Brandi Johnson, 38, who was subjected to an N-word rant from her black employer, Rob Carmona, The Associated Press reported. On Tuesday, the case heads back to federal court to determine the punitive damage amount.

Ms. Johnson said through her attorney that the rant was a “four-minute [N-word] tirade,” that sent her to the bathroom to cry for 45 minutes.

She testified: “I was offended. I was hurt. I felt degraded. I felt disrespected. I was embarrassed,” AP reported.