U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Milk Manufacturer Denied Promotions to a Woman Because of Sex, Federal Agency Charged
DETROIT - Country Fresh, LLC, a milk manufacturer which operates in Livonia, Mich., a suburb of Detroit, will pay $84,750 to settle a sex discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the federal agency announced today.
The EEOC's lawsuit alleged that Country Fresh violated federal law by failing to promote a woman to a supervisory position because of her sex. According to the suit, Country Fresh denied the employee promotions to positions such as production supervisor. She had worked in various production jobs throughout the plant, had decades of experience, and was repeatedly bypassed for promotions while men were promoted.
Sex discrimination violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The EEOC filed suit (Case No. 2:16-cv-11551) in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan after first attempting to reach a voluntary settlement through its conciliation process. The consent decree settling the suit, in addition to the monetary relief, prohibits any similar discrimination in the future and requires Country Fresh to train its supervisors, managers, and human resources representatives on sex discrimination.
"Qualified women who are passed over for a promotion because of their sex should file a discrimination charge with the EEOC," said EEOC Trial Attorney Nedra Campbell. "Filing a charge allows us to investigate these claims and identify cases of discrimination. Country Fresh should be commended for resolving this case at this juncture and committing to review its personnel policies."
Country Fresh, LLC is a wholly owned subsidiary of Dean Foods, which is headquartered in Dallas, Texas. Dean Foods is a large food and beverage company that specializes in dairy products. It has plants both in the United States and abroad.
The Detroit Field Office is part of the EEOC's Indianapolis District Office, which oversees Michigan, Indiana, Kentucky, 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.