Two Employees Racially Harassed at Work, Federal Agency Charged
LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- MPW Industrial Services, Inc., a Hebron, Ohio industrial cleaning company, will pay $170,0000 to settle a race discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the federal agency announced today.
According to the EEOC's lawsuit, MPW subjected two African-American employees to racial harassment, including hangman's nooses, racial epithets, racist comments and jokes, and an alleged KKK meeting at the worksite.
Such alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The EEOC filed suit (Case No. 1:18-cv-00063) in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, Cincinnati Division, on Jan. 29. The parties reached an agreement and filed a joint motion to enter a consent decree. The motion was approved by the court and the consent decree was entered on Oct. 23.
Under the decree, which settles the suit, MPW Industrial Services is required to pay $170,000 to the two former employees who experienced the racial harrasment. The decree also provides for injunctive and equitable relief and, in particular, requires that MPW train supervisors and managers to spot and prevent racial harassment in the future.
"As the statute makes clear, harassment on the basis of race is a violation of federal law," said Kenneth Bird, regional attorney for the EEOC's Indianapolis District Office. "We are committed to pursuing the claims of individuals who are subjected to workplace harassment because of their race."
The case was litigated by the Louisville Area Office, which is part of the EEOC's Indianapolis District, whose jurisdication includes Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, and parts of Ohio.
The EEOC advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. More information is available at www.eeoc.gov. Stay connected with the latest EEOC news by subscribing to our email updates.