WAL-MART WOMEN DENIED DISCRIMINATION CLASS ACTION
22 Jun, 2011
The largest class action lawsuit in history, against Wal-Mart, has been rejected by the US Supreme Court.
The court ruled that the 1.5 million women who alleged discrimination by the US retail giant will have to pursue action as individual and separate cases.
The women claimed they were the victim of lesser pay because of their gender.
Wal-Mart argued that the women work in diverse jobs in stores across the US and do have not enough in common for a class action, the court accepted this.
The women were seeking to claim back pay and punitive damages for the class of women, saying the company denied female employees promotion opportunities and paid them less.
The court ruled that the women could not show common “questions of law or fact” that held for all the women in the proposed class (any woman who has worked for one of more than 3,400 Wal-Mart stores in the US since December 1998).
“Here, [the group of women employees] wish to sue about literally millions of employment decisions at once,” Justice Antonin Scalia wrote.
“Without some glue holding the alleged reasons for all those decisions together, it will be impossible to say that examination of all the class members’ claims for relief will produce a common answer to the crucial question ‘why was I disfavoured.'”