Black Employees Endured Racial Comments, Bias and Reprisal for Protesting, Federal Agency Charged
LAS VEGAS – Shack-Findlay Automotive, LLC, doing business as Findlay Honda and Findlay Automotive Group, Inc., a car dealership in Henderson, Nev., will pay $150,000 to two black employees for subjecting them to discrimination, harassment and retaliation, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced today.
The EEOC filed suit against the company on behalf of the two individuals in September 2010 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada (EEOC v. Shack-Findlay Automotive, LLC d/b/a Findlay Honda and Findlay Automotive Group, Inc., Case No. 2:10-cv-01692-KJD-RJJ). In its lawsuit, the EEOC asserted that a parts department manager made racially derogatory comments and jokes on a near-daily basis and imposed stricter work-related rules on black employees than non-black employees. Two black employees were eventually fired, one after communicating that he was going to file a discrimination charge against the company.
Race discrimination and retaliation for complaining about it violate Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The EEOC filed suit after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process.
Findlay Honda agreed to enter into a consent decree with the EEOC resolving the matter. Aside from the monetary relief for the victims, the consent decree also requires that the company hire an outside EEO consultant; distribute its policies and complaint procedures with respect to workplace discrimination, harassment and retaliation; track future complaints; and provide annual equal employment opportunity training.
“We commend Shack-Findlay Automotive for taking proactive measures to ensure a workplace free of discrimination,” said Anna Y. Park, regional attorney of the EEOC’s Los Angeles District Office, whose jurisdiction includes Nevada. “We encourage other employers to take steps to ensure that managers are trained about their obligations under Title VII.”
Adriana Lopez, acting local director for the EEOC’s Las Vegas Local Office, added, “Retaliation is the No. 1 type of complaint filed with the EEOC nationwide and also in our district. Workers are increasingly aware that they have the right to report discrimination and harassment without reprisal by employers. We encourage employers to take preventative measures to combat this form of discrimination.”
The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the EEOC is available on its web site at www.eeoc.gov.