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PRESS RELEASE
10-24-05

FEDEX FREIGHT TO PAY $500,000 FOR RACIAL BIAS

EEOC Settles Suit for Qualified Black Workers Denied Promotions at Trucking Company

ST. LOUIS – The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) today announced a half million dollar settlement of a class employment discrimination lawsuit against FedEx Freight East, a nationwide trucking company, on behalf of 20 qualified African American employees who were denied promotions and assignments based on their race.

The EEOC alleged in the lawsuit that American Freightways, which was subsequently acquired by FedEx, discriminated against African Americans in making promotions from part-time to full-time dockworker positions, promotions to dock supervisor positions, and work assignments at its St. Louis terminal. Six African Americans dockworkers filed charges with the EEOC, intervened in the lawsuit, actively participated in its prosecution, and joined in the settlement. They were represented by Jon Berns and Jerome Dobson of Weinhaus, Dobson, Goldberg and Moreland.

In addition to $500,000 in monetary relief, the consent decree resolving the litigation – pending approval by the U.S. District Court in St. Louis – also requires reporting by FedEx on promotions from part-time to full-time dockworker positions and to dock supervisor positions.

"We are pleased that FedEx corrected the problems at its St. Louis terminal after it acquired American Freightways and now has reached a fair resolution of this lawsuit," said Robert G. Johnson, Regional Attorney for EEOC's St. Louis District Office. "Unfortunately, 40 years after enactment of the landmark Civil Rights Act, the EEOC continues to see cases of race discrimination against African Americans. All individuals deserve the freedom to compete and advance in the workplace on a level playing field without discriminatory barriers."

In addition to enforcing Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination based on race, color, sex, religion, and national origin, the EEOC also enforces the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, which protects workers age 40 and over from discrimination based on age; the Equal Pay Act, which prohibits gender-based wage discrimination; the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities in the federal sector; Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in the private sector and state and local governments; and sections of the Civil Rights Act of 1991. Further information about the EEOC is available on the agency's Web site at www.eeoc.gov.

In addition to enforcing Title VII, the EEOC enforces the Age Discrimination in Employment Act, which protects workers age 40 and older from discrimination based on age; the Equal Pay Act of 1963, which prohibits gender-based wage discrimination; the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, which prohibits employment discrimination against people with disabilities in the federal sector; Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act, which prohibits employment discrimination against people with disabilities in the private sector and state and local governments; and sections of the Civil Rights Act of 1991. Further information about the Commission is available on the agency's web site at www.eeoc.gov.