J.B. Robinson Jewelers Compliment - Sterling JB Robinson EEOC Discrimination Case
WALDORF MD -- PRESS RELEASE
STERLING JEWELERS SUED FOR SEX DISCRIMINATION
EEOC Says Jewelry Retail Giant Discriminated Against Thousands of Women Nationwide
BUFFALO, N. Y. – Sterling Jewelers Inc., the largest specialty retail jeweler in the country, violated federal law by discriminating against a large class of female employees at stores nationwide, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charges in a systemic lawsuit filed yesterday under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act.
In its suit, the EEOC asserts that Sterling Jewelers pays its female retail sales employees less than male employees performing equal work and denies female employees promotional opportunities for which they are qualified. Sterling Jewelers intentionally discriminates against female retail sales employees by maintaining a system for making promotion and compensation decisions that is excessively subjective, and through which Sterling Jewelers has permitted or encouraged managers to deny female employees equal access to promotion opportunities and the same compensation paid to similarly situated male employees, the EEOC states in its suit.
The EEOC filed its lawsuit after first attempting to reach a voluntary settlement (EEOC v. Sterling Jewelers Inc., Civil Action No.08-CV 706, in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of New York in Buffalo). The EEOC seeks monetary relief, an order requiring the company to implement new policies and practices to prevent discrimination, training on anti-discrimination laws, posting of notices at the worksite, and other injunctive relief.
“We hope this case is a wake up call to corporate America that sex discrimination in employment must be taken seriously and addressed appropriately,” said EEOC’s New York District Director Spencer H. Lewis, Jr. “It should be a ‘no-brainer’ in the 21st century workplace that women deserve pay and promotional opportunities based on merit, not gender. Employers who fail to grasp and abide by the letter of the law do so at great risk.”
EEOC Philadelphia District Director Marie Tomasso added, “In granting managers discretion to make pay and promotion decisions, employers need to ensure that they are not also granting discretion to engage in sex discrimination. Every person deserves the freedom to compete and advance in the workplace as far as their talent and ability allows.”
In Fiscal Year 2007, the EEOC received 24,826 charges alleging sex-based discrimination, up 7% from the prior year to the highest level since FY 2002.
According to its web site (www.sterlingjewelers.com), “Akron, Ohio-based Sterling Jewelers Inc. is the U.S. operations of London-based Signet Group plc, making it part of the largest specialty retail jewelry company in the world. Sterling is the largest U.S. specialty retail jeweler as ranked by sales with 1,308 stores in 50 states. Its’ mall stores are known nationwide as Kay Jewelers, and regionally under a number of well-established and recognized names, such as JB Robinson Jewelers. Sterling's destination superstores are known as Jared The Galleria of Jewelry.”
The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the EEOC is available on its web site at www.eeoc.gov.
Sterling Jewelers Complaint
Honestperson1 says: (1 year ago)
Working at Sterling Jewelers began as a good place to work. After about 1 week of employment my boss who was new to management began to bully me constantly, even went as far to tell their boss I was the problem after they found a letter address to human resources on their desk in a pad that I mistakenly left stating I wanted to be removed immediately only after a few weeks of employment. Never in my career have I had a problem with any of bosses. Every job I have ever had my bosses and I were friends and kept in contact when I left their organization. When I tried to approach my boss about problems and the behavior towards me they would get extremely upset then tell me it was me and EVERYONE knows, that was "SPOOKY" because I did NOT know a soul there. I kept to myself I was new in the position and the organization so I knew they were not telling me the truth. I thought I was living a straight NIGHTMARE and HAD gone to h. ll! I thought I was going to lose my mind working at STERLING JEWELERS. I knew I had a family to take care for this is why I continued to work there. I began going home to my family and friends stressed completely out, upset, and crying all the time and I mean daily. I was not sleeping at night at all and constantly complaining to everyone about my boss's behavior. The funny thing is upper management knew of the behavior before I was hired. I was told by team members my boss was SUPPOSE to change their behavior instructions given to them by upper management BEFORE I was hired. I could not understand why they would allow them to hire someone before they changed their behavior. This behavior was supported by their boss eventually it was evident. I was so stressed out I even went to seek help from a psychiatrist who told me my boss was a "BULLY BOSS" and get OUT of there. After awhile I was a nervous wreck it was wrote all over my face and everyone could see it. I did not know my head from a whole in the ground. I worked very hard for Sterling Jewelers receiving exceed expectation performance evaluations included describing me as being someone who demanded more work "WHO DEMANDS MORE WORK" My boss was a COMPLETE CONTROL FREAK! My boss was allowed to disrespect us at any given time supported by their boss. When I finally could not take it any longer and went to HR who treated me as if I was the problem once her boss was involved but privately defended my concerns. The boss was allowed to stay employed with Sterling which means they supported my boss's poor decisions and behavior towards personnel. If I had been smart I should have left as the psychiatrist instructed and sued them in the very beginning. When my manager's boss found out I went to human resources he was very upset with me. He even in front of human resources threaten to fire (in so many words) me if I did not accept the situation the way it was. I was very devastated that I had come to work for an organization as Sterling Jewelers. I will never worked for them again. I am seriously considering suing the h. ll out of them for mental stress and discrimination. Example of my boss's behvior - One of my punishments was to give me work completely over my head outside of what I was hired and know how to do. I did not mind challenges but ensure you do not set someone up to "Fail". HR instructed my boss not to give me that kind of work anymore then explained to me my boss was trying to challenge me which was complete "HOG WASH"! You know if my boss was right in giving me that work they would NOT have told them NOT to give it to me. Working there was like a BAD DREAM!! There is NO structure, NO rules, and NO regulations and if there is they are ONLY meant to be followed by non management personnel.
Sterling Jewelers faces EEOC class-action discrimination suit ...
An EEOC attorney said discrimination complaints at Tampa-area Sterling stores “
verified systemic pay and promotion discrimination across the entire company. ... He pointed out that most of Sterling's store managers and employees are ...
Sterling Jewelers faces EEOC class-action discrimination suit
* By HR Specialist: Florida Employment Law
* 1/1/2009 - 4:00am
* Employment Law
Eight women from the Tampa Bay area have joined an EEOC class-action lawsuit against Sterling Jewelers, owner of Jared, Kay Jewelers and Marks & Morgan stores.
The lawsuit alleges that Sterling, based in Fairlawn, Ohio, pays women in retail sales positions less than men and denies them promotions “with malice or reckless indifference.”
Plaintiff Dawn Soot-Coons was serving as a temporary store manager at the Jared Galleria of Jewelry store in Brandon near Tampa when she found a payroll report left on a desk. It showed that “every male except one earned more—$2, $3 and up to $4 an hour more—than any of the females,” she told the St. Petersburg Times.
“Even the top female sales associate, who sold more than $1 million of jewelry a year, got $2.50 less an hour than a guy just hired with no jewelry experience,” Soot-Coons said.
An EEOC attorney said discrimination complaints at Tampa-area Sterling stores “verified systemic pay and promotion discrimination across the entire company.” Sterling gives local managers broad discretion, resulting in “excessively subjective” pay, the EEOC said.
David Bouffard, vice president of media relations for Sterling, told the National Jeweler trade magazine, “We take the allegations raised in this lawsuit very seriously. We are confident that these charges do not reflect the culture of this company.” He pointed out that most of Sterling’s store managers and employees are female.
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