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Press Release 03-25-2024

EEOC Sues Iron Hill Brewery for Race Discrimination and Retaliation

Federal Agency Charges Buckhead Restaurant Fired Employee Because of His Race and For Reporting Mistreatment of Others

ATLANTA – Iron Hill Brewery of Buckhead, LLC, and Iron Hill Brewery, LLC, a chain of breweries and restaurants, illegally discriminated against an African American employee when it fired him because of his race and in retaliation for reporting discrimination against women and Hispanic employees, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a lawsuit filed today.

According to the lawsuit, an African American sous chef in training complained twice to Iron Hill that management employees were mistreating Hispanic employees and women, including not being provided a safe, private space to express breast milk.

For these actions, he received an unwarranted disciplinary action and was fired. Iron Hill stated that the firing was due to a violation of its “zero tolerance” policy on workplace discrimination, even though the sous chef in training had not engaged in discriminatory behavior. Iron Hill refused to terminate, or even discipline, a white employee who several employees claimed violated Iron Hill’s discrimination policy with respect to Black employees.

Such alleged conduct violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits race-based discrimination and retaliation for complaining about it. The EEOC filed suit (EEOC v. Iron Hill Brewery of Buckhead, LLC, and Iron Hill Brewery, LLC, Case No. 1:24-CV-1275-MHC-JKL) in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, Atlanta Division, after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its administrative conciliation process.

“Employees should feel free to report discrimination without fear of retaliation when they see behavior in the workplace that violates Title VII,” said Marcus G. Keegan, regional attorney for the EEOC’s Atlanta District Office “This lawsuit serves as a reminder to employers that federal law prohibits terminating employees when they speak up about workplace discrimination.”

Atlanta Office District Director Darrell Graham said, “Racial discrimination and retaliation in the workplace will not be tolerated. The EEOC will continue to protect the workforce and to vindicate the rights of individuals with the courage to come forward to report discrimination or harassment.”

For more information about laws prohibiting race discrimination in the workplace, visit For information about retaliation in the workplace, visit

The EEOC’s Atlanta District Office is responsible for addressing discrimination charges and conducting agency litigation in the State of Georgia and the State of South Carolina Counties of Allendale, Bamberg, Barnwell, Beaufort, Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton, Dorchester, Georgetown, Hampton, Jasper, and Williamsburg.

The EEOC prevents and remedies unlawful employment discrimination and advances equal opportunity for all. More information is available at Stay connected with the latest EEOC news by subscribing to our email updates.