Maryland dealerships Jerry's Chevrolet Inc. and Jerry Motor Cars Inc. will pay $62,500 to settle a discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, according to the federal agency.
The EEOC in September 2021 filed a discrimination and retaliation lawsuit against Jerry's Chevrolet and Jerry's Motor Cars in suburban Baltimore alleging that the businesses paid a female employee less than a man working in the same position and then fired her one week after she complained about the pay disparity to the dealership's director of human resources.
The woman, who worked as a dispatcher, had complained about the situation and requested higher pay in September 2020, the EEOC said. The agency alleged that the woman's dismissal was retaliation for her complaint not for telling an inappropriate joke, which was the reason cited by the dealerships, according to the EEOC.
Lawyers representing the dealerships denied the agency's allegations in a November 2021 response to the EEOC's complaint.
A settlement filed Nov. 30 detailed that the dealerships will pay the former employee $40,000 in back pay, plus $22,500 in damages, according to court records.
The settlement also requires the dealerships to implement a detailed equal-pay-for-equal-work policy and an anti-retaliation policy, as well as provide anti-discrimination training to all employees, according to court documents.
Lawyers representing Jerry's Chevrolet and Jerry's Motor Cars couldn't be reached for comment.