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Press Release 10-27-2022

EEOC and Kroger Limited Partnership I Resolve Religious Discrimination Lawsuit

Employees Denied Religious Accommodations, Federal Agency Charged

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – The Kroger Limited Partnership I will pay $180,000 to settle a religious discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the federal agency announced today. The EEOC had filed suit on behalf of two former employees who worked at a Kroger store in Conway, Arkansas.

According to the EEOC’s lawsuit, Kroger Limited Partnership I engaged in religious discrimination when it disciplined and ultimately fired the employees for refusing to wear an apron with the company’s “Our Promise” symbol because they believed it represented support for the LGBTQ+ community. Kroger denies the allegations.         

The EEOC filed suit (EEOC v. Kroger Limited Partnership d/b/a Kroger, Store No. 625, Civil Action No. 4:20-CV-01099 LPR) in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas, Central Division, after first attempting to reach a voluntary pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process.

The parties decided to resolve the case with a consent decree to avoid additional costs and uncertainties of future litigation. As part of the settlement, Kroger Limited Partnership I has agreed to create a religious accommodation policy and provide enhanced religious discrimination training to store manage­ment. 

“The EEOC commends Kroger on its decision to create a policy describing the process for requesting a religious accommodation,” said Faye A. Williams, regional attorney of the EEOC’s Memphis District Office, which has jurisdiction over Arkansas, Tennessee and portions of Mississippi. “This policy will provide guidelines for requesting religious accommodation. The parties in the case worked in good faith to resolve this matter, and the Commission is pleased with the resolution.”

The EEOC advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. More information is available at  Stay connected with the latest EEOC news by subscribing to our email updates.