The Department of Labor has recovered back pay wages for 80 employees who were illegally denied overtime payment by a nonprofit company, Keystone Adolescent Center. This company ran five facilities with the goal of helping at-risk youth. The Department of Labor investigated the company and found that 80 employees there were obligated to attend meetings and trainings outside of their normal working hours. Despite this, Keystone did not pay these employees any wages whatsoever for this time. Instead, Keystone only paid the employees to attend these meetings if the meetings happened to occur during the employees’ regularly scheduled shifts. This conduct is a violation of the Fair Labor Standards Act. Employers are obligated to pay their employees for mandatory work meetings, even when such meetings happen outside of normal shift times. https://www.dol.gov/newsroom/releases/whd/whd20210405-1
The U.S Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently settled a lawsuit against Burrow Global Services, LLC, which is an engineering and construction company. The EEOC had alleged that Burrow discriminated against one of its electrical designers (who was over 60 years old) based on his age after the electrical designer’s supervisor was replaced with a much younger individual. Right after this supervisor took over, he made repeated comments to the older designer about retirement and regularly asked when the designer was planning to retire. Soon after, this same supervisor terminated the designer’s employment and offered the job to a significantly younger person. This alleged conduct is a violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act. Employers may not discriminate against or terminate older employees due to their age. See EEOC v. Burrow Global Services, LLC, No. 4:20-cv-00423 (S.D. Tex.).
The U.S. Department of Labor recently found that a restaurant group owed back wages to eleven of its employees because the employer had illegally denied these employees time-and-a-half overtime wages. The DOL found that the company had misclassified its cooks and dishwashers as exempt from overtime wages. Even though the cooks and dishwashers were paid a salary, none of the exceptions to overtime were applicable. Therefore, the company was required to pay them time-and-a-half wages for all time worked more than 40 hours in a week. https://www.dol.gov/newsroom/releases/whd/whd20210310
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has settled a lawsuit that it filed against a security company that allegedly terminated one of its employees due to her pregnancy. The EEOC’s lawsuit alleged that Allied Universal transferred one of its security guards to a more difficult post after it learned that she was pregnant. The security guard told Allied Universal that this new post was causing her pain. In response, Allied Universal did not move the employee back to her original post but instead requested a doctor’s note. The employee provided Allied Universal with the note, and Allied placed the employee on a leave of absence involuntarily. Allied then demanded another doctor’s note in order to release her to return to work. Again, the security guard provided this note. Despite this, Allied kept the employee on leave for more than a month and then terminated her employment. This alleged conduct is a violation of the Pregnancy Discrimination Act Amendment to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. See EEOC v. U.S. Security Associates, Inc., No. 2:20-cv-02467 (E.D. La.).
The EEOC recently settled a lawsuit against Optimal Solutions & Technologies, Inc. after the EEOC alleged that the company terminated one of its employees after he disclosed a disability. The EEOC’s lawsuit claimed that one of the senior administrators working at Optimal Solutions told his supervisor that he had a benign brain tumor, and that this brain tumor would require radiation treatment for about six weeks. The employee also informed his supervisor that the treatments would occur after work and would not impact his job. Despite this, and despite the employees continued strong work performance, Optimal Solutions terminated his employment just a month after he informed Optimal Solutions of his disability and only one week before his radiation treatment was scheduled to begin. This alleged conduct is a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits employers from firing employees because of a disability or because of their requests for reasonable accommodations due to a disability. EEOC v. Optimal Solutions & Technologies, No. 8:17-cv-02861 (D. Md.).
The EEOC recently settled a lawsuit in which it alleged that a male manager had targeted young female employees around the ages of 15-to-20 and subjected them to sexual harassment. The EEOC’s lawsuit claimed that the manager made sexual comments to these women and that he inappropriately touched and groped some of them. The EEOC further alleged that he asked one of the restaurant’s 15 year old employees to text him nude pictures of herself. This event led to the arrest of the manager by the local police. Despite the accusation, arrest, and indeed a guilty plea for misdemeanor harassment, the restaurant allowed the manager to return to work and did not stop the inappropriate behavior. The EEOC’s Complaint asserted that New China terminated the employment of at least one female employee in retaliation for her complaints of sexual harassment by this manager. This alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits sexual harassment as well as retaliation for complaints of sexual harassment. See EEOC v. New China, Inc., No. 1:20-cv-00277-CL (D. Or.).
The U.S. Department of Labor recently succeeded in recovering over $50,000 of back wages for more than 50 employees who worked for Sprouts Farmers Market, which the DOL claimed did not record nor pay employees for work that they performed off of the clock, before and after scheduled shift times, and during meal breaks. Employers are obligated to pay their employees for all hours that the employees work, even if such hours are off of the clock or before or after their scheduled shift. The failure to record or pay for these hours resulted in the employer violating overtime laws pursuant to the Fair Labor Standards Act. Under that law, almost all hourly employees are entitled to time-and-a-half overtime wages for every hour that they work over forty in a workweek. https://www.dol.gov/newsroom/releases/whd/whd20210216-2
An aerospace components manufacturer, United Precision Products Co., recently settled a lawsuit that the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission had filed against it. The EEOC’s lawsuit claimed that United Precision failed to hire a prospective employee because of his age (64). The applicant sought work at United Precision through a staffing agency, however, during the interview process, United’s Precision’s plant supervisor asked for the prospective employee’s age, when he graduated high school, and his driver’s license. After the interview, this same supervisor told the staffing agency that they were rejecting the applicant because he did not have the “desire” for the job. This alleged conduct is a violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act. The ADEA prohibits employers from discriminating against employees or prospective employees due to their age. See EEOC v. United Precision Products Co., No. 2:20-cv-10930 (S.D. Mich.).
A collection of residential care facilities have been ordered to pay a significant penalty by the U.S. Department of Labor, after the DOL found that the owners of the facilities had violated both minimum wage and overtime laws under the Fair Labor Standards Act. An investigation found that owners were paying certain employees flat rates per day, regardless of the number of hours that the employees worked. By doing this, the company tried to eschew overtime laws that require time-and-a-half overtime wages to employees who worked over forty hours in a workweek. In addition, the company also did not pay employees for certain hours that they worked, such as hours for required training. The laundry list of violations continued with a failure to display the FLSA poster and a failure to keep accurate records for weekly hours worked and paid. The Fair Labor Standards Act prohibits all of these violations. Non-exempt employees must be paid time-and-a-half overtime wages when they work over forty hours in a workweek, even when the employees are paid a “flat rate.” An employer in Ohio who violates overtime laws may be required to pay all unpaid wages, an equal amount of liquidated damages, and attorney’s fees and costs.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently settled a lawsuit against a security services firm in which the EEOC had claimed that the company had subjected female employees to sexual harassment and at least one employee to retaliation as well. The EEOC’s lawsuit alleged that one of the company’s site managers had subjected a female security guard to unwanted touching, inappropriate and lewd sexual comments, and that he had cornered this guard in an elevator and kissed her without consent. The guard complained to management. Instead of addressing the manager’s inappropriate and illegal behavior, the company fired the guard in retaliation for her complaints. The EEOC further alleged that this manager had also sexually harassed a class of female employees at the company with similar behavior including sexual advances, inappropriate sexual comments, requests for explicit pictures, and an attempt to kiss another employee. Other managers saw this harassment, but the company did nothing to stop it. This alleged conduct is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination and harassment on the basis of sex, as well as complaints about such discrimination and harassment. See EEOC v. MVM, Inc., No. 1:17-cv-02881 (D. Md.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently settled a sexual harassment lawsuit against Nature’s Medicines. The EEOC’s lawsuit alleged that one of the General Managers subjected multiple employees to a hostile work environment. The lawsuit further claimed that the harassment involved unwelcome touching and offensive sexual comments to the staff and offensive sexual comments to and about customers. On at least one occasion, the GM showed an employee a nude picture on his phone. Multiple employees complained about this behavior. This alleged conduct is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits sex discrimination and sexual harassment. See EEOC v. AMMA Investment Group, LLC, No. 1:20-cv-02786 (D. Md.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently settled a lawsuit against a medical transportation company named American Medical Response Ambulance Service, Inc., in which the EEOC had claimed that AMRAS had discriminated against one of its employees because of her pregnancy. The EEOC’s lawsuit alleged that one of AMRAS’s paramedics requested a reasonable light duty accommodation near the last stages of her pregnancy. The employee submitted a doctor’s note as part of her request for this light duty work. Despite the reasonable request, AMRAS denied her light duty. In comparison, for other employees, AMRAS permitted light duty accommodations when these employees had been injured on the job. Instead, AMRAS insisted that the paramedic could either work without any restrictions or take an unpaid leave. This alleged conduct is a violation of the Pregnancy Discrimination Act. When companies provide light duty accommodations to employees who are injured on the job, then it must maintain consistency in that policy with pregnant employees who request the same accommodation. See EEOC v. American Medical Response Ambulance Service, Inc., No. 2:19-CV-258 (E.D. Wash.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has settled a lawsuit against a steel-fabrication company, Moore & Morford, Inc. The EEOC had previously filed a lawsuit against the company alleging harassment based on her sex and retaliation for her complaints of harassment. The EEOC’s lawsuit claimed that Moore & Morford subjected one of its female employees to a hostile work environment based on her sex. Male employees of the company regularly used offensive and derogatory terms to the female employee that were based on her sex, and they told her that “women don’t belong on the floor.” The female employee complained to the owners, but that only resulted in the company’s foreman treating her even worse (grabbing her by her shirt collar, denying her tools, and making her clean feces in the women’s bathroom). Due to the continued harassment, she filed a Charge of Discrimination with the EEOC, and shortly after filing the Charge, the company terminated her employment. This alleged conduct is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which prohibits harassment based on sex and retaliation for complaints of such harassment. See EEOC v. Moore & Morford, Inc., No. 2:20-cv-00892 (W.D. Pa.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently announced that it had settled a lawsuit against Interconnect Cable Technologies Corporation in which the EEOC had alleged that ICTC had discriminated against one of its employees who suffered from a disability. The EEOC’s lawsuit claimed that ICTC first demoted and then fired its employee who had been hospitalized due to a mental illness from which the employee suffered. The employee, who suffered from major depressive disorder, was hospitalized for a short time due to her disability. When she attempted to return to work after this hospitalization, ICTC took away her job duties. Shortly after that, ICTC demoted the employee and cut her pay. Eventually, about four months after the hospitalization, ICTC terminated her employment. Such alleged conduct is a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits discrimination on the basis of an employee’s disability. See EEOC v. Interconnect Cable Technologies Corp., No. 8:20-cv-00644 (M.D. Fla.).
A nursing home, formerly known as Edgewood Manor, has agreed to settle an Equal Pay Act lawsuit filed by the EEOC. The EEOC’s lawsuit claims that 12 Licensed Practical Nurses were paid at a rate lower than it paid to its male LPNs. The EEOC alleged that Edgewood paid female LPNs a range of $20-$26.50 per hour (depending on experience) compared to a range of $25 to $27 per hour for its male LPNs who had the same or less experience. The alleged conduct is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits pay discrimination based on sex. See EEOC v. Edgewood Manor OPCO LLC, No. 4:19-cv-760 (W.D. Mo.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently reached a settlement with a company that the EEOC claimed had harassed one of its employees so badly that it forced him to quit. The employee, a sales consultant, was allegedly subjected to constant verbal harassment based on race, sexual orientation, and a disability. This alleged conduct is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination and harassment on the basis of sex (including sexual orientation) and race. The alleged conduct also violations the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits discrimination and harassment on the basis of disability. See EEOC v. Baccarat, Inc., No. 1:20-CV-02918 (S.D.N.Y.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has settled a lawsuit against Stan Koch & Sons Trucking, Inc. The EEOC filed a lawsuit alleging that Koch refused to rehire one of its former employees because she previously filed an EEOC Charge against the company. In her previous charge, the former employee alleged that Koch discriminated against women because it used a strength test to screen for truck drivers. The EEOC’s lawsuit claimed that after this charge, Koch refused to allow the former employee to apply for re-employment, solely because of the previous charge of discrimination. Retaliating against an employee (or former employee) because they filed an EEOC Charge is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. See EEOC v. Stan Koch & Sons Trucking, Inc., No. 19-cv-1371 (D. Minn.).
EEOC Contends Employers Must Supply Sign Language Interpreters to Deaf Applicants Interviewing for a Job
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently settled a lawsuit against a technology business service company, Conduent Business Services, LLC, after the EEOC alleged that the company discriminated against a prospective employee due to a disability. The EEOC’s lawsuit claims that Conduent refused to interview (and hire) a prospective employee who was qualified for the potential job because he was deaf. He applied for a job with Conduent as a corporate development associate, and Conduent initially showed interest in interviewing him, but then chose not to consider the application after the prospective employee’s job recruitment firm informed Conduent that the prospective employee would need an American Sign Language interpreter. The EEOC contends that employers must provide interpreters to deaf applicants when they interview for a job. The alleged conduct is a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act. This law makes it illegal to discriminate against employees and applicants because of a disability. See EEOC v. Conduent Business Services, LLC, No. 2:19-cv-1854 (D.N.J.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity recently settled a lawsuit against a company for allegedly discriminating against an employee due to her disability. The EEOC’s lawsuit claimed that the employee suffered from epilepsy. The employee suffered a seizure at home after work and called to ask her supervisor for two days off of work to recover from the seizure. When she returned to work, the company fired the employee and told her that she was fired because her absences occurred during her probationary period. This alleged conduct is a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits discrimination against employees due to a disability. See EEOC v. PML Services, LLC, No. 3:18-cv-00805 (W.D. Wis.).
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently settled a lawsuit against a company allegedly making discriminatory wage payments. The EEOC’s lawsuit alleged that Covenant had paid one of its female business intelligence developers a lower salary than it paid to two male employees who performed the same work and held the same position as the female employee. This alleged conduct is a violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits paying less to employees because of their sex when they perform the same or equal work. See EEOC v. Covenant HealthCare, No. 2:20-cv-10662 (E.D. Mich.).