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Press Release 08-25-2021

First Watch Resolves Employment Discrimination Charges with EEOC

NORFOLK, Va. -- First Watch, a restaurant chain headquartered in Bradenton, Florida, has agreed to conciliate employment discrimination charges with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the federal agency announced today.

Without admitting liability, First Watch agreed to enter into a two-year conciliation agreement with the EEOC. The company agreed to pay an undisclosed amount in compensatory damages to settle the charge.

First Watch has committed to preventing harassment by providing training to all personnel on a biannual basis. First Watch has also agreed to provide additional leadership training to all managers in the Hampton Roads area as a way to further illustrate to its staff and customers the company’s unstinting commitment to ensuring a safe environment for its workers as well as its customers.

In light of recent incidents involving increased allegations of discrimination in the Hampton Roads area, First Watch and the EEOC agreed to work collectively to provide this news release as an outreach to the community as a reminder that the EEOC is here to investigate matters of sexual harassment and other workplace discrimination covered under federal law.
“We thank First Watch for working with EEOC in an outreach effort to ensure a safe, discrimination-free workplace exists for all people in our community,” said Norberto Rosa-Ramos, Director of the EEOC’s Norfolk Local Office. “This type of significant commitment by an employer to protect vulnerable workers is a priority for the EEOC.”

The EEOC’s Norfolk Local Office is part of the Charlotte District Office, which has jurisdiction over a three-state region of Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina.

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.