Les Schwab Target of Sex Discrimination Lawsuit




Les Schwab Target of Sex Discrimination Lawsuit

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed a lawsuit on Wednesday against Les Schwab Tire Centers – one of the largest tire and automotive chains in the West – for sex discrimination.

The company is accused of failing to hire, train, and promote women into management jobs. In the past 50 years, Les Schwab has only promoted one woman to the position of assistant manager.

The EEOC filed the claim on behalf of two women who alleged that they were repeatedly denied promotions to management positions within the company because of their gender.

A prerequisite for moving up into the more lucrative management positions is working in the tire bay – a job that involves dismounting, rotating, and repairing tires.

“In 1996, I started at the bottom and worked up to sales and management for an independently owned Les Schwab Tire Center. But when Les Schwab corporate took over this store, they demoted me to bookkeeper. When I asked about my prior position, I was told, ‘No gal in the company would ever make that kind of money,’” said Jennifer Strange, one of the two women represented in the claim.

Les Schwab said that it was “working diligently” to resolve the lawsuit, which is unspecified seeking economic damages. The suit could have ramifications for other women injured by the company’s discriminatory practices.

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