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$940,000 Settlement To Be Shared Among Class of African Americans and Women Denied Hire

CLEVELAND – The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced Friday that it had resolved its lawsuit charging that S & Z Tool & Die Co. discriminated against African American and female applicants in hiring due to their race and sex.

The lawsuit (Case No. 1:03CV2023) was filed in September 2003 under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and resolved by consent decree in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio Eastern Division. The EEOC alleged that S & Z Tool & Die Company, a Cleveland-based metal manufacturing firm founded in 1943, engaged in a pattern and practice of refusing to hire female applicants for employment because of their sex, and black applicants because of their race. Molly Baron-Prodan and a class of other black and female applicants were denied hire into non-clerical entry-level positions such as laborer, or semi-skilled jobs such as machine operator.

The settlement provides $850,000 as monetary remedy to an estimated class of at least 20 women and black applicants who sought employment since 1999. Additionally, Baron-Prodan will receive an offer of employment and $90,000, which includes compensatory damages. Other provisions include annual EEO training to all supervisory and management employees and human resource employees, and the appointment of an EEO Coordinator.

EEOC Regional Attorney Jacqueline McNair said, “This settlement will ensure that African Americans and women will have equal opportunity to compete in the workplace based upon their knowledge, skills, and abilities on a level playing field. We are also pleased that the settlement provides for extensive EEO training for management and human resource staff.”

The EEOC is responsible for enforcing the federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability and retaliation. Further information about the EEOC is available on its web site at