Pre-Employ Blog

EEOC Files Lawsuit Against Large Food Distributor for Sex Discrimination

Posted by admin on June 27, 2013

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity commission is suing a national food distributor for  sex discrimination during the  recruitment process.  According to the EEOC, the company exhibited a  pattern of refusing to hire female workers for operations positions across the country. These actions violate  the Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and the EEOC is ready to prepare the lawsuit for the discrimination that has allegedly been going on since at least January 1, 2004.

Upper-level management communication highlights intention to exclude female workers
Whether failing to hire a person because of a result of background checks, the sex of the prospect or other biases, hiring managers are in the wrong. The food distributor was repeatedly not hiring women for specific operations positions, including selector, receiving clerk, driver, meat cutter and forklift operator, at its distribution facilities nationwide, according to the EEOC. Upper-level management reportedly told managers to choose men over women. Executives voiced a bias against women for warehouse work more than once, many questioning what role women played in this type of work, claiming it was not a good idea for them to be in the warehouse and calling them both "a waste of time" and "these girls."


When a woman was suggested for a promotion for the nighttime warehouse training supervisor, her resume reached the corporate vice president of operations. Her promotion was rejected and resume was disregarded, stated the EEOC. Instead, a man was hired even though he lacked the four year degree or experience the woman possessed, according to Land Line magazine. It was also reported that vice presidents and other executives repeatedly questioned managers choices to hire women or try to promote them. This kind of activity in the workplace is considered sex-based discrimination and is taken seriously by the EEOC.

The EEOC has devoted significant resources to ensuring compliance with Title VII through outreach and technical assistance," said David Lopez, EEOC general counsel. "This case demonstrates once again, however, that the EEOC is prepared to use litigation where necessary when employers engage in broad-based patterns of sex discrimination in hiring and promotions."

HR compliance creates equal opportunity workforce
Companies that adhere to proper hiring practices and reject sex discrimination policies and practices will not only serve their operations better but create a more balanced and sustainable workforce. Biases in the recruitment process can hinder proper talent acquisition and cause unavoidable problems down the road. The food distributor that exhibited sex discrimination when hiring and with internal promotions now faces legal action from the EEOC and a damaged reputation.

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Topics: HR Compliance, EEOC