UnityPoint Health Trinity to Pay $65,000 to Resolve EEOC Sexual Harassment and Retaliation Lawsuits

Federal Agency Says the Former Trinity Medical Center Subjected Female Employees to Sexual Harassment and Fired One Employee When She Complained

ROCK ISLAND, Ill. - UnityPoint Health Trinity (formerly known as Trinity Medical Center) will pay $65,000 to a group of current and former employees to resolve two related sexual harassment cases brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today.  

The EEOC had charged that Trinity subjected a class of female employees to sexual harassment.  The agency also alleged that the hospital system fired one of the alleged victims when she complained about the harassment to management. 

Such alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex, including sexual harassment, and also prohibits retaliation for opposing such discrimination.  The EEOC filed the suits (EEOC v. Trinity Medical Center, Civil Action Nos. 12-cv-4085 and 13-cv-4099 in U.S. District Court for the Central District of Illinois) after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process.  EEOC Regional Attorney John Hendrickson, Trial Attorneys Justin Mulaire and Laurie Elkin and Supervisory Trial Attorney Greg Gochanour litigated the cases on behalf of the government.

U.S. District Judge Sara Darrow of the Central District of Illinois entered the decree on Jan. 28 ending the suits, which provides $65,000 in monetary relief to the victims.  In addition, the decree includes an injunction against harassment and retaliation and imposes record keeping and reporting responsibilities on the medical center for the decree's term.  

"We at the EEOC are encouraged that this decree not only remedies the discrimination that occurred, but will prevent such discrimination in the future," said Hendrickson.  "The public has been well served by the EEOC's pursuing justice for these women."

The EEOC's Chicago District Office is responsible for processing charges of discrimination, administrative enforcement, and the conduct of agency litigation in Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, and North and South Dakota, with Area Offices in Milwaukee and Minneapolis.

The EEOC is responsible for enforcing federal laws against employment discrimination.  Further information is available at www.eeoc.gov.

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