Wild Fork Foods to Pay $130k to Settle EEOC Suit for National Origin / Race Harassment and Retaliation

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)
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U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)

MIAMI – Food Ventures North America, Inc., doing business as Wild Fork Foods, a member of the JBS USA family of companies, has agreed to pay $130,000 to settle a national origin and race discrimination and retaliation lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the federal agency announced today.

According to EEOC’s lawsuit, Wild Fork Foods violated federal law when a Hispanic female employee in its Miami corporate office was subjected to a hostile work environment based on her national origin and race and subjected to retaliation for complaining and ultimately forced out of her job.

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination based on an employee’s national origin and retaliating against an employee for complaining of the conduct. The EEOC filed its lawsuit in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, Miami Division (EEOC v. Food Ventures of North America d/b/a Wild Fork Foods, Civil Action No. 1:21-cv-21389-KMW), after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process.

The two-and-one-half-year consent decree resolving the EEOC’s lawsuit has been approved by the federal court. In addition to paying $130,000 in monetary relief, Wild Fork Foods will provide specialized training on national origin and race discrimination and harassment to human resources personnel, managers and employees to ensure that employees are aware of their rights and complaint procedures and that management and human resources personnel are aware of their obligations to prevent workplace discrimination and how to address complaints. The decree also requires Wild Fork to provide EEOC with reports of any complaints of national origin and race discrimination and describe its actions taken in response to the complaint.

“We commend Wild Fork Foods for working collaboratively with EEOC to resolve this law-suit,” said EEOC Regional Attorney Robert Weisberg. “The company’s willingness to address EEOC’s concerns and its agreement to implement preventative measures and train management and human resources personnel on how to address complaints of national origin and race discrimination will benefit its workers and the company.”

EEOC Miami District Director Paul Valenti added, “The failure by employers to effectively address discriminatory hostile work environments remains a persistent problem in the workplace. The commitment by Wild Fork Foods to address this problem by taking strong, affirmative measures should ensure equal opportunity for employees of all ethnic backgrounds.”

EEOC advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. The Miami District Office’s jurisdiction includes Florida, Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands. Further information is available at www.eeoc.gov.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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