Homebuilder Paid Female Purchasing Manager Less than Males for Equal Work, Federal Agency Charged
WASHINGTON - Stanley Martin Companies, LLC, one of the largest homebuilders in the Mid-Atlantic Region, will pay $45,000 and furnish significant equitable relief to resolve a federal sex-based pay discrimination lawsuit, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced today.
EEOC charged Stanley Martin with refusing to promote Carrie Smith to a purchasing manager position at its Reston, Va. office, due to her sex. When Stanley Martin finally promoted Smith to the purchasing manager position, she was paid a lower salary than male purchasing managers even though she was doing substantially equal work, EEOC says.
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination based on sex, including pay discrimination and in making promotion decisions. The Equal Pay Act of 1963 also prohibits compensation discrimination based on sex. EEOC first attempted to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process before filing suit in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, Alexandria Division (EEOC v. Stanley Martin Companies, LLC, Civil Action No. 1:15-cv-01246-AJT/IDD).
Washington Field Office Acting Director Mindy Weinstein said, "Fairness and the law require that when a woman is doing substantially equal work as her male colleagues, she should get equal pay."
In addition to the $45,000 in monetary relief to Smith, the two-year consent decree resolving the lawsuit prohibits Stanley Martin from violating Title VII or the EPA. Stanley Martin will provide training to all managers, supervisors and employees on the federal laws prohibiting pay discrimination and other forms of sex discrimination. The company will revise its policies to remove so-called pay secrecy rules which restricted employees from talking about their own salary with co-workers. Stanley Martin will also report to EEOC about its compliance with the consent decree, including how it handles any internal complaints of sex discrimination and will post a notice about the settlement.
"We are pleased this settlement provides full compensation to Ms. Smith for her wage loss and ensures female applicants and employees will not be subjected to discrimination in promotions or pay," said EEOC Regional Attorney Debra M. Lawrence.
Enforcement of equal pay laws and targeting compensation systems and practices that discriminate based on gender is of one of six national priorities identified by EEOC's Strategic Enforcement Plan.
EEOC's Washington Field Office has jurisdiction over the District of Columbia and the State of Virginia counties of Arlington, Clarke, Fairfax, Fauquier, Frederick, Loudoun, Prince William, Stafford and Warren, and the State of Virginia independent cities of Alexandria, Fairfax City, Falls Church, Manassas, Manassas Park and Winchester.
EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the agency is available on its website, www.eeoc.gov.