June 2019 Verdicts and Settlements
Published by Eric A. Welter on July 18, 2019
Our summary of recent verdicts and settlements for June 2019.
New Mexico: State of New Mexico Corrections Department (“NMCD”) to pay $700,000 to settle age discrimination and retaliation suit. Several NMCD employees over 40 years of age claimed they were denied promotions and job assignments because of their age and that they suffered retaliation after complaining. In additional to the monetary settlement, the NMCD must allow charging parties or aggrieved individuals to request review of hiring authority decisions during the two-year settlement agreement term.
Illinois: Illinois Action for Children (“IAFC”), a large child care and education nonprofit, to settle $60,000 for disability discrimination suit based on the termination of an employee who required an extended leave of absence. The employee was terminated rather than granted extended leave for cancer treatment. In addition to monetary relief, IAFC is required to provide annual in person training on disability discrimination to their officers, supervisors, managers and HR personnel.
Alaska: Alaska gold mining company, Northern Star (Pogo) LLC, to pay $690,000 to settle sex discrimination and retaliation suit. The metal mining company allegedly refused to promote a female miner but promoted male colleagues with less seniority and/or training. When the miner complained about the unfair treatment, the mining company retaliated against her by imposing additional training requirements, while allowing male miners to advance without meeting the same requirements.
Michigan: Memorial Healthcare to pay $74,418 to settle religious discrimination suit. Memorial Healthcare, which operates a hospital in Owosso, Michigan, refused to accommodate or hire an individual because of her religious belief against receiving flu shots.
Memorial refused to accommodate a medical transcriptionist, whose religious beliefs require her to forgo inoculations. The transcriptionist offered to wear a mask during flu season, however, Memorial refused the accommodation and rescinded her offer of employment.
Illinois: Alliance Ground International to pay $135,000 to settle sexual harassment and retaliation suit. The Chicago cargo handling company allegedly tolerated the sexual harassment of female employees and fired a male employee for speaking out against the harassment of his female colleagues.
An Alliance Ground employee filed a charge of discrimination against the company claiming sexual harassment by her supervisor. Despite several employee complaints against the same supervisor, Alliance Ground ignored the complaints. A male employee who witnessed the harassment reported it to human resources, but he was later terminated by the same supervisor against whom he made the complaint.
Missouri: Chicago-based Staff Management SMX (“SMX”) to pay $50,000 to settle sexual harassment suit in Missouri. SMX male manager made explicit sexual comments to female employees and demanded sexual favors from them. Although one female employee complained, the manager continued to harass her, including exposing himself to the employee. The same employee made a second complaint, which resulted in SMX investigating and returning the manager to work. The manager then threatened the complaining employee and demanded to know why she reported the misconduct. Following the threats, the female employee was forced to quit.
Texas: Defense contractor L-3 Communications to pay $75,000 to settle disability discrimination suit after forcing an engineer to resign after returning from medical leave. The engineer, who was employed by L-3 for six years, suffered two depressive episodes at work and went on a medical leave of absence. Once the engineer was released to return to work, L-3 required that he pass a fitness-for-duty exam before returning him to his position. Although the engineer was qualified for his job and cleared to return to work, L-3 ended his employment by giving him the option to resign or be fired.Topics: Age Discrimination, Alaska, disability discrimination, EEOC, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Illinois, Michigan, Missouri, New Mexico, Religious Discrimination, Retaliation, Sexual Harassment, Texas