EEOC Sues DHL Alleging Racial Segregation of Workers
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission sued DHL Express (USA) Inc., alleging it discriminated against black Chicago-area employees by giving them worse assignments than their white counterparts.
The EEOC has received more than 20 complaints of discrimination against the U.S. unit of Bonn-based Deutsche Post AG, including the allegation that black drivers were dispatched to predominantly black neighborhoods, and white drivers to white neighborhoods, according to a statement issued by the agency today.
“DHL assigned more difficult and dangerous work to black employees than white employees,” violating federal civil rights laws, EEOC regional attorney John Hendrickson said in the statement.
The lawsuit, filed today in federal court in Chicago, seeks a class-status on behalf of about 150 black DHL workers in the Chicago area, a court order barring the discriminatory practices and unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.
The maximum recovery for any one individual would be $300,000, Hendrickson said in a phone interview.
Bea Garcia, a DHL Express spokeswoman, , said in an e-mailed statement that the company doesn’t comment on pending litigation.
“That said, DHL’s policies provide equal employment opportunities to all employees and comply with all applicable federal, state and local laws governing nondiscrimination in employment,” Garcia said.
The case is Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. DHL Express (USA) Inc., 10-cv-06139, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois (Chicago).
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