- "[C]orporate managers have openly stated they wanted employees who had ' the Armani look, were white, had blue-eyes, thin, and blond in order to be profitable.'"
- Senior Vice President of Operations Barbara Bachman, after visiting stores in the Maryland and Philadelphia markets, including Cogdell's, distributed an email stating under "Global Issues" that "Store Teams - need diversity African Americans dominate - huge issue."
- Despite Cogdell's "outstanding performance" as a store manager leading to her store being ranked number 8 nationally (out of more than 500 stores), the Sr. Vice President in the same "Global Issues" email, claimed Cogdell "is not right for this store."
- After the email, the Vice President of Operations directed Cogdell's district manager to demote Cogdell.
- Wet Seal took no corrective action even after Cogdell complained about the discriminatory email, and "African American employees bombarded" Cogdell "with concerns of ongoing race discrimination."
- Wet Seal's "failure to take effective remedial and corrective action to address the egregious managerial conduct of Bachman and other corporate officials, created a stressful and hostile working environment" for Cogdell. The EEOC found that these events, "coupled with the fact, she was employed with a company where managers were instructed to make employment decisions based on race" created conditions "so intolerable, her only recourse was to resign."
Civil Rights Attorneys: EEOC Finds Wet Seal Discriminated Against African-American Class Action Plaintiff
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