Southern California restaurant chain pays $150,000 for discriminating against male servers

Sometimes employers will make excuses for allowing or participating in discriminatory conduct. A government agency recently accused a Southern California restaurant chain of citing supposed customer preference as justification for engaging in practices that violate labor laws.

Burgers & Beer will pay $150,000 to settle a sex discrimination lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) claimed the El Centro-based restaurant chain disqualified male applicants from server positions based solely on their sex.

Burgers & Beers’ alleged refusal to hire male servers led to a workforce mostly made up of female employees. The EEOC contended that this practice had been ongoing since 2015. Hiring on the basis of sex is illegal and a form of discrimination.

Along with paying the settlement, Burgers & Beers agreed to take steps to prevent future workplace sex discrimination. The company will modify its job descriptions, along with developing a recruitment plan for hiring more male applicants. The restaurant will also provide employees with training on anti-discrimination laws.

The verdict can have a significant impact on other similar restaurant chains that favor employing female servers due to so-called customer preference. If you have experienced discrimination in the workplace, contact the employment attorneys at McCormack & Erlich to discuss your case.

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