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U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission



PRESS RELEASE
7-6-10

O’Fallon Billboard Company to Pay $55,000 to Settle EEOC Sexual Harassment and Retaliation Lawsuit

Trinity Products Manager Sought to Replace Female Employee After She Complained About His Misconduct, Federal Agency Charged

ST. LOUIS – Trinity Products, Inc., a manufacturer of billboards and signposts based in O’Fallon, Mo., will pay $55,000 to settle a sexual harassment and retaliation lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today. 

In its lawsuit, the EEOC had charged that a high-level manager sexually harassed his assistant with offensive language and gestures and requests for sexual favors. Then, the EEOC said, he sought to replace her after she complained to other supervisors about his conduct, resulting in her discharge.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits sexual harassment and retaliation for reporting it. The EEOC filed suit after first attempting to reach a voluntary settlement out of court through its conciliation process.

The consent decree settling the suit, filed today for approval by U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri (EEOC, et al. v. Trinity Products, Inc., et al., Case No. 4:09CV01617 CAS), also requires the company to distribute a notice on employees’ rights under federal anti-discrimination laws, provide sexual harassment training to all managers, and permit the EEOC to inspect records of internal complaints of such harassment. The decree will remain in effect for two years.

“Federal law mandates a workplace free from sexual harassment and retaliation for reporting such misconduct,” said Barbara A. Seely, regional attorney of the EEOC’s St. Louis District. “All employers must ensure that employees work in a safe environment without fear of retribution for bringing concerns of unlawful activity to the attention of management.”

The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information is available at www.eeoc.gov.