PHOENIX, AZ (STL.News) Trafficade Service, Inc., a Phoenix-based work zone services company, has agreed to pay $82,390 and provide other equitable relief to settle an EEOC lawsuit alleging it harassed employees based on national origin and then retaliated against them for complaining, the federal agency announced today.
According to the EEOC’s lawsuit, Trafficade managers and employees repeatedly used racial slurs when referring to two Mexican American employees and created an unsafe workplace for them. The EEOC also contends that Trafficade retaliated against them for complaining to management about the harassment and filing charges of discrimination with the EEOC.
Trafficade’s alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits employment discrimination based on national origin and retaliation for complaining about it. The EEOC filed suit in U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona (EEOC v. Trafficade Services, Inc., Civil Action No. 2:20-cv-01545) after first attempting to reach a voluntary settlement through its conciliation process.
Under the two-year consent decree settling the suit, signed by Chief Judge Murray Snow, Trafficade will pay compensatory damages and back pay to the two employees. In addition to the monetary relief, Trafficade will review and revise its polices and provide training on federal employment laws to its human resources director, executive managers and all line staff. It will also issue letters of regret to the harmed employees.
“We are pleased Trafficade has made a commitment to educate its workforce and to encourage an environment free of discrimination and retaliation,” said Regional Attorney Mary Jo O’Neill of the EEOC’s Phoenix District Office. “We continue to be concerned about race discrimination and retaliation in workplaces, but we hope this is a positive step to ensure employees can feel safe.”
Elizabeth Cadle, district director of the EEOC’s Phoenix District Office, added, “Employers must equip their managers with the tools to ensure that complaints of discrimination and harassment are taken seriously instead of retaliating against people who complain or who participate in investigations.”
The EEOC’s Phoenix District Office has jurisdiction over Arizona, Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, and part of New Mexico (including Albuquerque).