$200,000 to be Paid by Grocer for Sex Based Hiring Discrimination

Monday, July 13, 2015

A Merrillville, Ind., grocer will pay $200,000 to a class of women who were denied night-crew stocking positions to settle a sex-based hiring discrimination lawsuit brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

EEOC charged in its suit that Ultra Foods, owned and operated by SVT, L.L.C., violated federal law when it rejected female night crew stocker applicants because of their sex between Jan. 1, 2010 and June 30, 2014. EEOC further charged that Ultra Foods unlawfully disposed of hiring records that it should have maintained during that same time period.

Such alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The EEOC filed suit (Case No. 2:13-cv-0245-RLM-PRC in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Indiana, Hammond Division) after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process.

In addition to the monetary settlement, the consent decree resolving the suit, which will remain in effect until July 2018, requires Ultra Foods to: not discriminate or retaliate in the future; take steps to keep all required hiring records; train supervisors and managers who play any role in hiring. Additionally, the company must ensure that one of every four night-crew stocking openings at Ultra's Merrillville Broadway Street store is offered to a woman who participated in the EEOC's lawsuit and still wants such a position; establish a protocol to ensure that female night-crew applicants will be considered for employment; and establish a continuing relationship with local Work One Centers to better ensure female recruitment.

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