EEOC discrimination Charges have recently been filed against Walmart in 48 states by approximately 2,000 current and former female employees claiming pay and promotion discrimination. These women are among those who made up the historic class action suit that was thrown out by the U.S. Supreme Court in 2011. Montana and Vermont are the only states where charges were not filed.
These charges come after the U.S. Supreme Court reversed class certification in Dukes v. Walmart last year. That suit was originally filed in 2001 on behalf of up to 1.5 million female Walmart workers. The U.S. Supreme Court reversed class certification because the Court found that the female employees did not have enough in common. Walmart will now have to fight this battle on several thousand fronts instead of just one. Because the female employees have filed charges with the EEOC, they may pursue individual lawsuits despite the reversal of the class certification in Dukes v. Walmart. It appears as though counsel for the female employees will now pursue regional class actions across the country. Women in the Texas and California regions have already filed class actions in federal court in October 2011 and an expanded class action was also filed in Texas federal court in January 2012. More regional suits are expected to follow.
Counsel for the women point to the large number of charges filed across the country as evidence of the widespread discrimination by Walmart.