Bloomberg News

Wal-Mart Women Limit Gender Bias Suit to California Workers

November 01, 2011

(Updates with workers’ allegations in third paragraph.)

Oct. 27 (Bloomberg) -- Lawyers for women who originally sued Wal-Mart Stores Inc. for sex discrimination on behalf of 1 million co-workers nationwide amended the lawsuit today, limiting it to gender-bias claims by California workers.

The filing comes four months after the U.S. Supreme Court in June barred the case as a class action covering all U.S. stores, saying the women failed to prove the world’s largest retailer had a nationwide policy that led to gender discrimination. The Supreme Court sent the suit back to federal court in San Francisco, where it was first filed in 2001.

The new filing alleges that Wal-Mart blocked women in California from promotions and paid them less in management and hourly positions than men doing comparable work. Lawyers for the women said they amended the suit to respond to the Supreme Court’s rejection of the nationwide class.

The amended lawsuit was filed by five current or former company employees on behalf of all women working in California Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club stores from December 1998 to the present.

The California lawsuit is Dukes v. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., 01-cv-02252, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California (San Francisco). The Supreme Court case is Wal-Mart v. Dukes, 10-00277, U.S. Supreme Court (Washington).

--Editors: Michael Hytha, Glenn Holdcraft.

To contact the reporters on this story: Margaret Cronin Fisk in Southfield, Michigan, at mcfisk@bloomberg.net; Karen Gullo in San Francisco federal court at kgullo@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net


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