Three employers in Alabama, Mississippi and South Carolina have settled separate lawsuits with the EEOC for an amount totaling $454,000. Under the suits brought by the EEOC, all three companies were accused of racial bias.
In a class action case against Pemco Aeroplex, the Birmingham, Alabama aerospace and defense company, the EEOC alleged that nooses, swastikas and other threatening symbols created a hostile work environment for African American workers. The company provides aircraft maintenance and modification services for government and the military.
The other two cases settled involved Ryan’s Restaurant Group, Inc. and Renal Care Group, Inc.
In the larges of the three settlements, Pemco Aeroplex will pay $390,000 in addition to changing its policies on workplace discrimination. According to the EEOC, the suit was based on 36 separate discrimination charges filed since 1998. After an investigation, the EEOC charged that since 1995 Pemco had engaged in a patter of race discrimination by subjecting them to racial slurs, epithets and racially offensive graffiti. The graffiti included Ku Klux Klan symbols.
In addition to the payment, the settlement requires Pemco to change its policies concerning racial harassment and retaliation. This includes training all employees in preventing racial harassment annually. The company will also institute new complaint procedures, and introduce preventative measures. Pemco will also provide team building and diversity training, and conduct surveys to determine the effectiveness of these measures.
The EEOC’s suit against Pemco was dismissed, but reinstated on appeal. Some Pemco employees had filed a separate suit against Pemco, which was settled in 2002. Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, it is illegal to discriminate against workers based on race, color, religion, sex, or country of origin.
“Despite what some may think, overt racial harassment of African Americans still occurs in workplaces more than 40 years after passage of the landmark Civil Rights Act,” said EEOC Chair Naomi C. Earp. “In addition to the severe types of race discrimination witnessed in these cases, the EEOC also is seeing more subtle forms of bias against people of color – which is why we recently launched the E.RACE Initiative.”
In a second case, Ryan’s Restaurant Group of Jasper, Alabama agreed to pay $41,000 to a former employee who is black. The suit charges that the employer created and condoned a racially hostile work environment at its restaurant. This included a display of hangman’s nooses by the restaurant manager.
When the Ryan’s employee complained about the nooses, he was fired in retaliation. Under Title VII, employers are not allowed to take any retaliatory action against employees who lodge a complaint with the EEOC. This includes changing the employee’s working conditions or pay, disciplining them or firing them.
Ryan’s Restaurant Group has its headquarters in Greer, South Carolina. The company operates more than 340 Ryan’s and Fire Mountain restaurants in 23 states in the South and Midwest. The company employs over 23,000 people and serves 110 million customers each year. As part of this settlement, Ryan’s will institute anti-discrimination training.
The third suit settled was with Renal Care Group, Inc. of Jackson, Mississippi. The EEOC alleges that Renal Care discriminated against an African American manager and fired her when she complained about the discrimination. Under the settlement, the company will pay the employee $21,000.
“Each of these lawsuits addressed the mistreatment of blacks in the workplace based solely on their race,” said EEOC Attorney C. Emanuel Smith, of the Birmingham office. “The Commission will continue to identify issues, criteria and barriers that contribute to race and color discrimination.”
All of the companies in this article deny any wrongdoing.
All citizens should be afforded equal opportunities, especially when it comes to employment. You should not be segregated, separated or otherwise discriminated against because of certain characteristics. You should be free to work in a place that you will not be harassed or made to feel intimidated. There are both federal and state laws that employers are expected to follow in their employment practices. Along with the federal EEOC, most states have a specific department or agency dedicated to the education, regulation and enforcement of such laws.
The South Carolina Human Affairs Commission is the agency that investigates violations of and enforces South Carolina (SC) Job Discrimination Law in the Workplace. The overall goal of the Commission is to eliminate and prevent unlawful discrimination in employment on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age and disability.To refuse to hire or to discharge without just cause, or otherwise to discriminate against any person with respect to the terms and conditions, or privileges of employment, or any matter directly or indirectly related to employment on any of these basis is a violation, and punishable by law. Using preferences or other screening methods when advertising or recruiting is also prohibited.
If you feel your rights under South Carolina (SC) Job Discrimination Law in the Workplace have been violated you have 180 days to file a complaint with The South Carolina Human Affairs Commission. If it were more than 180 days but less than 300, your complaint would be forwarded to the U. S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Your complaint will then be evaluated and determined whether you have basis for a discrimination complaint. If such basis is found, a formal charge of discrimination will be prepared for you. You would then sign it and have it notarized and return it to the Commission. The complaint would then be filed with the EEOC and served on the party you are filing against.
South Carolina has its own law to define the state’s sexual discrimination law in the workplace: The South Carolina Human Affairs Law prohibits employers from making decisions about an individual’s hiring, firing or job conditions, terms or compensation based on that person’s gender. This law also includes discrimination against those who are pregnant or who have pregnancy related conditions.
According to the law, all employers who have fifteen or more employees are subject to the law except for Indian tribes and private membership clubs. Employees are those employed by employers as defined in the law except for people elected to public office and their staff members.
Those who feel their rights have been violated can file a complaint with the South Carolina Human Affairs Commission within 180 days of the alleged discriminatory act. You’ll need to fill out an Employment Initial Inquiry Questionnaire as well as addition forms depending on your specific incident. From there, the Commission will draw up a formal complaint which you will need to sign. The Commission will then send the complaint to your employer and give him or her a chance to respond to the allegations.
The Commission can decide whether you case should be mediated, investigated or transferred to the EEOC. If they decide to investigate it, an investigator will gather information and use that information to decide whether or not there is reasonable cause to believe that your civil rights have been violated.
If the investigator finds reasonable cause, you and your employer will enter a settlement phase. If you are unable to negotiate a settlement, the Commission will issue a “Right to Sue” letter so that you can take the case to the state courts.
Both employers and employees have to take the time to find out their rights and responsibilities when it comes to sexual discrimination in the workplace. To help with the process, employers should always keep posted a current South Carolina Complete Labor Law Poster.
While looking at the South Carolina anti-discrimination laws, I found that South Carolina is committed to ending illegal discrimination in places of employment. The South Carolina Human Affairs Commission is in charge of enforcing the laws against discrimination in the workplace in South Carolina. There are both federal and state laws that employers must follow. One such law requires employers to display the South Carolina state discrimination posters.
The South Carolina state discrimination posters contain valuable information for both employers and employees. These posters let everyone know what type of treatment is and isn’t allowed in the workplace. The South Carolina state discrimination posters explain that no worker can be discriminated against because of their race, religion, age, sex, national origin, color, familial status, or disability.
Anyone who is a victim of discrimination must file the complaint with the South Carolina Human Affairs Commission as soon as possible. If the complaint isn’t filed within one hundred and eighty days it will automatically be dismissed. So a victim must call, write, or personally visit an office of the Commission as soon as possible. The complaint will be received by an Intake Investigator. It will then be decided of the alleged victim has grounds for a discrimination complaint. If the Commission decides there is cause to investigate, an investigation will begin. Most investigations take between ninety and one hundred and eighty days to complete.
Laws protecting people against discrimination won’t do any good if the people being protected don’t know about the laws. That is why the South Carolina state discrimination posters must be displayed in the workplace. The employers must display these posters in a place where all employees have a very good chance of seeing them. The employees need to make sure they know their rights to be treated fairly. The South Carolina state discrimination posters inform them of these rights.
I have been looking up state discrimination laws to find out what the differences are between the states. I noticed that in South Carolina, according to the South Carolina Human Affairs Law, it is illegal for an employer to discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age and disability. This law is fairly standard throughout the states, though some states also make provisions for ancestry, sexual orientation and age if over 40.
If an employee in South Carolina wants to file a discrimination claim, then he or she needs to file the claim with the state administrative agency, the South Caroline Human Affairs Commission (SHAC) or the federal administrative agency called the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).
These two agencies (the SHAC and the EEOC) have a “work-sharing agreement”, which is actually pretty standard throughout the states. A work-sharing agreement means that the state agencies cooperate with each other to process claims. As such, if you file with one agency, you will not have to file with another as long as you indicate that you would like to cross-file your claim. However, many attorneys recommend that you file first with the SHAC when it comes to your discrimination claims.
Also, keep in mind that many states, including South Carolina, have a time deadline for filing a claim. You must file your claim within 180 days of the alleged discrimination. If you want to file with the EEOC, then you must file within 300 days of the alleged date of discrimination. Many people hire attorneys to handle any discrimination cases so that you can file a lawsuit if your case is successfully resolved by an administrative agency. If you are filing a federal employment discrimination case, then you must first go through the EEOC before the state agency, but you can cross-file so that you do not have to file twice.