EEOC Sues McCormick & Schmickâ€™s
â€œAfrican-American employees must be provided equal opportunities in job assignments and earnings with white employees, based on the quality of their work and customer service, and not their race,â€? says Spencer Lewis, the EEOCâ€™s New York District Director.
National seafood restaurant chain McCormick & Schmickâ€™s Restaurant Corp., faces a lawsuit alleging the company discriminates against Black employees by routinely assigning them to small parties and denying them the opportunity for larger tips resulting in diminished income.
Sometimes these employees werenâ€™t even assigned patrons, according to the lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), The Black Star News has learned. The company also faces allegations of retaliation against the Black employees, according to the race discrimination action.
The action, filed under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, contends managers in the chainâ€™s New York restaurant â€œroutinely assigned African-American food servers inferior work by assigning them to serve customers in sections of the restaurant that had smaller parties, by denying them assignments of larger parties with greater resulting tips and income, by denying them better paying assignments to banquets at the restaurant, and by failing on some occasions to give them assignments to any customers.â€?
A call from The Black Star to the companyâ€™s headquarters for comment was referred to a spokesperson who didnâ€™t return a call by online publication time. The action was filed after attempts to reach a settlement with the Portland, OR-based restaurant chain werenâ€™t successful, according to the EEOC (www.eeoc.gov). â€œAfrican-American employees must be provided equal opportunities in job assignments and earnings with white employees, based on the quality of their work and customer service, and not their race,â€? says Spencer Lewis, the EEOCâ€™s New York District Director.
Added the federal agencyâ€™s New York District Regional Attorney, Elizabeth Grossman: â€œCreation of a two-tier workplace where African-Americans are denied the more lucrative job assignments because of their race is unlawful race discrimination.â€? The lawsuit seeks both injunctive and monetary relief.
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