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Press Release 04-02-2019

South Carolina Waste Company to Pay $32,500 to Settle EEOC Sex Discrimination Suit

Company Refused to Interview a Woman to be a Waste Truck Driver, Federal Agency Charges

ATLANTA - American Pride Waste Solutions, Inc., a Bluffton, S.C., waste disposal company, will pay $32,500 and furnish other relief to settle a sex discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the federal agency announced today.

The EEOC filed suit in April 2018, charging that American Pride violated federal law by failing to interview or hire Christina Rivers for a waste truck driver position because of her gender. Rivers was fully qualified to work as a driver, holding a commercial driver's license and having experience driving large trucks. In April 2016, Rivers applied to work for American Pride, but was never interviewed despite her qualifications. American Pride has never hired a female driver and offered inconsistent and varying ex­cuses for its failure to interview Rivers, who it admitted was qualified to be interviewed.

Such alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits employers from engaging in sex discrimination. The EEOC filed suit (Civil Action No. 9:18-cv-00912-DCN-JDA) in U.S. District Court for the District of South Carolina after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settle­ment through its conciliation process.

In addition to providing monetary damages to Rivers, the consent decree settling the suit requires American Pride to update and disseminate anti-discrimination policies that prohibit discrimination. The decree also requires that the company provide annual equal employment opportunity training to its managers, supervisors, and employees. The two-year decree further requires the company to post a notice to its employees about the lawsuit and to provide periodic reporting to the EEOC about complaints of discrimination, harassment, and/or retaliation.

"The law does not allow employers to cut off job opportunities because of an employee's sex," said Darrell Graham, acting director of the EEOC's Atlanta District Office. "Ms. Rivers should have been interviewed and given a fair chance to have that job."

Antonette Sewell, regional attorney for the Atlanta District Office, added, "The EEOC is pleased that the company has agreed to settle this matter and implement policies and procedures that are condu­cive to a work environment free of sex discrimination. Women who are qualified and apply for jobs should be treated fairly and given the opportunity to follow their chosen careers."

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.