Retirement Community Failed to Hire Woman It Suspected Would Become Pregnant, Federal Agency Charged
TAMPA - The Glenridge on Palmer Ranch, an upscale retirement community in Sarasota, Florida, will pay $70,000 and furnish other relief to settle a sex discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the federal agency announced today.
According to the EEOC's lawsuit, a manager at Glenridge texted an applicant to ask when she planned on having another baby, explaining, "With this position it doesn't leave a lot of time off for long periods of time." Glenridge failed to interview the applicant and offered the position to an older female that it did not believe would become pregnant.
Such alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended by the Pregnancy Discrimination Act. EEOC filed suit in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Tampa Division (EEOC v. The Glenridge on Palmer Ranch, Inc., Case No. 8:18-cv-02340-T02-CPT) after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process.
In addition to the $70,000 in damages, the three-year consent decree settling the suit requires Glenridge to adopt and distribute an updated policy against sex discrimination; conduct annual training on sex discrimination for its hiring officials; and post a notice about the lawsuit.
"Too often, companies sideline employees who are pregnant or may become pregnant," said Robert E. Weisberg, regional attorney for the EEOC's Miami District. "EEOC will continue to seek vigorous enforcement of the laws that protect women from this kind of intentional and harmful discrimination."
The EEOC's Tampa Field Office director, Evangeline Hawthorne, added, "The EEOC received nearly 3,000 charges alleging pregnancy discrimination in 2018. This settlement sends a clear message to employers that failing to prevent and address such discrimination has consequences."
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.