Press Release 03-29-2021

O’Reilly Automotive Stores to Pay $165,000 to Settle EEOC Sexual Harassment and Retaliation Suit

Male Managers and Employees Subjected Women to Sex Harassment at Orlando O’Reilly Store, Federal Agency Charged

ORLANDO, Fla. – O’Reilly Automotive Stores, Inc., a retail distributor of automobile parts headquartered in Springfield, Mo., with thousands of stores across the country, has agreed to pay $165,000 to three former female employees and provide equitable relief to settle a sexual harassment and retaliation suit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the federal agency announced today.

The EEOC charged that an O’Reilly supervisor and other male employees subjected female employees at an O’Reilly store in Orlando to a hostile work environment by making sexually charged comments, including asking female employees for sex and making comments about women’s buttocks and breasts, and touching female employees inappropriately. Notwithstanding their complaints to the supervisor, store managers and corporate headquarters, the harassment did not end. One woman who complained was subjected to retaliation which forced her to resign.

Workplace sexual harassment and retaliation for complaining about it violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. After first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process, the EEOC filed suit in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida (Orlando Division), styled EEOC v. O’Reilly Automotive Stores, Inc., Case No. 19-cv-00882-GAP-LRH, after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process.

The two-and-one-half-year consent decree settling the suit, approved by the court on March 29, requires O’Reilly to train managers and employees on anti-discrimination laws, train managers on responding to complaints of sex harassment, and provide annual reports to the EEOC on its investigation of employee discrimination complaints.

“This resolution provides justified relief to the victims of O’Reilly’s discrimination and seeks to implement needed policies and practices at O’Reilly to prevent future harassment and retaliation,” said Robert E. Weisberg, regional attorney for the EEOC’s Miami District Office.

Paul Valenti, district director of the EEOC’s Miami’s District Office, added, “Victims of sex harassment suffer emotionally and economically. The EEOC will continue to combat workplace harassment and retaliation so that employees are not made to endure these injustices.”
 
The EEOC advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. More information is available at www.eeoc.gov. Stay connected with the latest EEOC news by subscribing to our email updates.