Cha Cha Cha Gender Discrimination
Woman Claims Restaurant Company Violated Wage Laws
A woman in Portland recently initiated legal action against the Cha Cha Cha company related to claims of gender discrimination. According the lawsuit, the plaintiff was paid less than her male counterparts, was forced to work in unhealthy conditions, and was also subject to numerous jokes about her race and body weight. The lawsuit against the company seeks $804,943, which includes $99,920 in back wages.
While the worker does not claim sexual harassment, the lawsuit alleges gender discrimination and violations of the Equal Pay Act on the following bases: management at the company held men-only meetings, talked about sexual activity, and prohibited employees from hiring pregnant women. The worker also claims that she received much less compensation than her male coworkers who had less responsibilities at the company – which is in violation of gender discrimination laws. While the woman was only paid $12 an hour for the first year in her new position, she was the lowest paid individual at the company. The woman also reports that she was never paid for up to 26 hours of overtime work. Lastly, the woman claims that the workplace was hostile and that she was required to work in an unventilated room below a kitchen.
Cha Cha Cha has not yet responded to requests for comment, and it remains uncertain how the case will resolve. A second worker sued the company in 2015 for a different wage claim, but this matter was privately settled.
Federal Laws Prohibiting Gender Discrimination
The Equal Pay Act requires the men and women who are employed at the same workplace must be compensated with equal pay for equal work. It is not required for these positions to be identical, but they must be substantially similar. This means that the tasks performed in the position must be similar, but the job titles are not required to be the same. All forms of compensation are covered by this law including bonuses, life insurance, overtime pay, stock options, and vacation pay. If a wage inequality exists between workers, employers are prohibited from reducing either workers’ pay to equalize pay.
A person who alleges an Equal Pay Act violation may go directly to court and is not required to file an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission charge beforehand. It is important for workers to understand that these claims must be filed within two years of the date that the alleged unlawful activity occurred. As a result, it is critical for workers who believe that their employer committed these violations to not hesitate to obtain the assistance of a skilled wage and hour lawyer.
Title VII also makes it illegal to discriminate based on a worker’s sex in areas including wage and pay. This body of law also prohibits employers from paying workers less on the basis of age, color, disability, race, religion, and national origin.
Speak with a Skilled Wage Attorney
If you are a worker who believes that your rights were violated by an employer who failed to adequately compensate you, you should not hesitate to speak with a knowledgeable lawyer. Contact Herrmann Law today to obtain the assistance of an experienced wage and hour attorney. Call our office: 817-479-9229 or fill out our online questionnaire, and someone from our office will contact you.