by David Hudson
Originally published: June 28, 2016
The first of two landmark lawsuits brought by the US’s Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) against private employers was settled Thursday.
The lawsuits are the first to be instigated by the EEOC for plaintiffs who said they had been discriminated against for being gay. They were filed at the beginning of March.
The legal action followed last July’s landmark ruling by the EEOC that gay and lesbian staff could claim sexual orientation discrimination as a form of sex discrimination.
According to court papers, one of the companies concerned has agreed to pay $200,000 to settle its case – the bulk of the money going to a former lesbian employer.
Yolanda Boone said that she was harassed by other employees at Pallet Cos. in Maryland. The company, which operates as IFCO Systems, makes food packaging pallets.
Boone says she endured verbal harassment, including a supervisor informing telling her that he wanted: ‘to turn you back into a woman’, asking ‘Are you a girl or a man?’ and telling her she would ‘look good in a dress.’