$1,513,094 Award Against Company for Sexual Harassment and Retaliation

 
Tuesday, May 14, 2013
 
 A jury has rendered a verdict of more than  $1.5 million in the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's (EEOC)  sexual harassment and retaliation lawsuit against New Breed Logistics, a North  Carolina-based logistics services provider.   The verdict followed a seven-day trial before U.S. District Court Judge S. Thomas Anderson on behalf of four claimants  and included awards of $177,094 in back pay, $486,000 in compensatory damages  and $850,000 in punitive damages for the discrimination victims.

The EEOC's lawsuit charged New Breed Logistics with subjecting three female employees in Memphis to sexual harassment and  retaliating against the three female employees and one male employee for  opposing the harassment in violation of Title VII.  Specifically, the jury found that New Breed,  through the conduct of a warehouse supervisor, harassed three temporary workers  by subjecting them to unwelcome sexual touching and lewd, obscene and vulgar sexual remarks at the company's Avaya Memphis area warehouse facility. 

Further, the EEOC charged and the jury found, a New Breed supervisor fired the three temp workers because they complained about the harassment.  In addition, the EEOC said, the supervisor  also retaliated against a male employee by terminating him because he opposed  the harassment and agreed to serve as a witness for several claimants during  the company's investigation. 

Sexual harassment and retaliation for complaining about it  violate Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.  The EEOC filed suit (Civil Action No.  2:10-cv-02696-STA-tmp) in U.S. District Court for the Western District of  Tennessee at Memphis after first attempting to reach a voluntary  settlement. 

In addition to the monetary damages awarded by the jury  totaling $1,513,094, the EEOC  also seeks an injunction prohibiting discrimination in the future by the  defendant as well as other injunctive relief to be determined by the court.

New Breed Logistics, a logistics services provider that  helps companies design and operate supply chains, warehousing and distribution,  operates five Memphis warehouses.  New  Breed is a national company, headquartered in High Point, N.C.  The company also has warehouses in Atlanta,  Chicago, Dallas, Texas, Los Angeles and Kearny, N.J.
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