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Fresno Food Supplier Settles Job Seeker's Gender Discrimination Claim

An opening for an Executive Assistant position with Olam Americas in Fresno was thought to be filled when a female applicant was offered the position. But, then Olam Americas found out that she was pregnant and rescinded its employment offer.

Withdrawing the offer for the Executive Assistant position because of the applicant's pregnancy is a form of gender discrimination. The food supplier has agreed to a $140,000 settlement to end the woman's discrimination lawsuit against the company.

In addition to the financial settlement, Olam agreed to create an internal procedure to address gender discrimination claims, to make sure that discrimination claims are appropriately handled and to monitor compliance with anti-discrimination laws by management and human resources. Additional training will be provided to all employees of Olam's six manufacturing plants in Northern and Central California. The EEOC will oversee Olam's compliance with the terms of the settlement.

Neither discrimination based on gender nor discrimination based on pregnancy are allowed in the California workplace. Title VII of the federal Civil Rights Act and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act protect against gender-based discrimination. You are protected from discrimination based on sex in:

  • Hiring
  • Firing
  • Promotion opportunities
  • Job reclassification
  • Company-provided benefits like paid time off, vacation time or sick time
  • Pay or salary

Sexual harassment, while not allowed in the workplace on its own, may also be considered a form of gender discrimination.

Source: Fresno Bee, "Olam Americas settles pregnancy discrimination suit for $140,000," Robert Rodriguez, March 15, 2012

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