The Bell Company To Pay $230,000 To Settle EEOC Lawsuit For Gender Harassment And Retaliation via

Company Fired Female Worker for Complaints About Gender-Based Abuse, Discharged Male Manager Who Refused to Fire Her, Federal Agency Charged

BALTIMORE – A construction company that provides services to the U.S. Army at its Aberdeen, Md., location will pay $230,000 and furnish other substantial relief to settle an EEOC gender-based abuse and retaliation lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today.

In its suit the EEOC charged that Bell BCI, LLC and the Bell Company, LLC, both doing business as “The Bell Company,” violated federal law by subjecting Elaine Cusato to a sexually hostile and offensive work environment while she was employed as a skilled equipment operator. The EEOC said that Cusato was subjected to daily criticism by her supervisor, the plumbing crew foreman, with a vehemence, aggression and profanity that was not directed at male workers. Further, the EEOC charged that when mechanical foreman Timothy Shultz refused to fire Cusato solely because she was considered a “troublemaker” for complaining about the sex discrimination, both were fired as retaliation.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employment discrimination based on sex and retaliation for complaining about it. The EEOC filed suit (Civil Action Nos. 1:10-cv-01342 and 1:10-cv-02710) in U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland, Northern Division, after first attempting to reach a settlement out of court through its conciliation process.

In addition to the monetary relief to Cusato and Shultz, the consent decree requires that the Bell Company provide significant remedial relief:

  • Bell’s supervisors, managers and officers and all persons with human resource oversight are enjoined from sexually harassing or condoning the sexual harassment of any employee retaliating against any employee who complains of or opposes sexual harassment;
  • Bell will implement and maintain written policies and procedures for its work sites prohibiting employment discrimination, including sex discrimination, sexual harassment and retaliation;
  • The company will distribute a copy of its written policies and procedures to all current and future employees;
  • Bell will post and maintain a poster at its work sites affirming its commitment to maintaining an environment free of discriminatory, harassing or retaliatory behavior; and,
  • Provide anti-discrimination training to all salaried field construction employees, superintendent-level and higher, of two hours’ duration.

“Employers have a responsibility to maintain an environment free of gender-based harassment and retaliation, which are clearly and simply illegal,” said EEOC Regional Attorney Debra M. Lawrence. “This settlement provides appropriate relief to the victims while implementing measures to prohibit this type of misconduct in the future.”

In fiscal year 2010, the EEOC received 29,029 sex-based charges and 30,948 retaliation charges filed under Title VII.


Walmart, Sex Discrimination & Your Workplace | The HR Answer Blog

Does the Supreme Court action mean that employers will see fewer claims of discrimination? No, in fact it may lead to the opposite. The plaintiff attorneys for the Walmart employees say they have heard from 12,500 women who are ready to move forward against the global retailer. They are likely to form smaller classes or pursue individual claims. The attorneys even set up a website to encourage additional women to pursue claims of sex discrimination.

via Walmart, Sex Discrimination & Your Workplace | The HR Answer Blog.

CareerBuilder Study Points to Improvements in Workplace Equality, But Disparity in Pay and… — CHICAGO, June 9, 2011 /PRNewswire/ —


CareerBuilder surveyed more than 1,300 diverse workers to gauge how their work experience has evolved with their growing proportions in the U.S. workforce. The study focused on larger economies and workforces, targeting the top 20 markets in the U.S. by population. The results for six diverse segments – African Americans, Hispanics, Asians, women, workers with disabilities and Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/Transgender (LGBT) workers – were compared to non-diverse workers, defined as Caucasian males who are not LGBT, and not disabled. The national survey was conducted from February 21 to March 10, 2011.

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CareerBuilder Study Points to Improvements in Workplace Equality, But Disparity in Pay and… — CHICAGO, June 9, 2011 /PRNewswire/ —.

Dots To Pay Nearly A Quarter Million To Settle EEOC Race Discrimination Suit

According to the EEOC’s lawsuit, Dots’ Merrillville, Ind., clothing store denied jobs on a systemic basis to white applicants since at least April 1, 2007. During that time, the EEOC contended, Dots regularly hired black entry-level applicants for sales positions, but excluded white applicants who were equally or better qualified.

via Dots To Pay Nearly A Quarter Million To Settle EEOC Race Discrimination Suit.

HUD announces agreement on pregnancy suit – The Federal Eye – The Washington Post

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development today announced a settlement agreement with Cornerstone Mortgage Company, a national mortgage lender based in Houston, which HUD had accused of engaging in discriminatory lending practices against expectant mothers.

via HUD announces agreement on pregnancy suit – The Federal Eye – The Washington Post.