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Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Sierra Pacific Industries

October 19, 2012

EQUAL EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITY COMMISSION,
PLAINTIFF, AHMED ELSHENAWY,
PLAINTIFF-INTERVENOR,
v.
SIERRA PACIFIC INDUSTRIES DEFENDANT.



The opinion of the court was delivered by: Kendall J. Newman United States Magistrate Judge

[PROPOSED] CONSENT DECREE

Plaintiff U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("Commission" or "EEOC") brought this lawsuit under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and Title I of the Civil Rights Act of 1991, to correct alleged unlawful employment practices on the basis of national origin and retaliation, and to provide appropriate relief to Charging Party Ahmed Elshenawy, who alleged he was adversely affected by such practices. In the interest of resolving this matter the EEOC and Sierra Pacific Industries ("Defendant") (hereinafter referred to as "the Parties") have agreed that the above-captioned lawsuit (the "Lawsuit") should be finally resolved by entry of this Consent Decree.

CONSENT DECREE CV-01470-MCE

This Consent Decree shall not constitute an adjudication and/or a finding on the merits of the Lawsuit. This Consent Decree resolves all claims raised by the EEOC which stem from EEOC Charge No. 370-2005-00641 (Ahmed Elshenawy v. Sierra Pacific Industries) and the EEOC Complaint in this Lawsuit, and constitutes a complete resolution of all claims of discrimination under Title VII that were made or could have been made by the EEOC based on this charge. This Consent Decree does not, however, resolve any future charges or charges that may be pending with the EEOC other than the charge and Complaint specifically referenced in this paragraph. The parties agree that the conditions and terms of this Consent Decree apply to the employees and operations of Defendant's Red Bluff Millwork facility in Red Bluff, California. This Consent Decree comprises the full and exclusive agreement of the EEOC and Defendant with respect to the matters discussed herein. No waiver, modification or amendment of any provision of this Consent Decree shall be effective unless made in writing and approved by all the Parties to this Decree, and any substantive change, modification or amendment of any provision of this Consent Decree shall also require approval by the Court. The Court has reviewed this Consent Decree in light of the pleadings, the record herein, and now approves this Consent Decree.

THEREFORE, IT IS ORDERED, ADJUDGED AND DECREED:

I.GENERAL PROVISIONS

This Court has jurisdiction over the subject matter and the Parties to this Lawsuit. This Court will retain jurisdiction over this Decree for all purposes until the expiration of Defendant's obligations as set forth herein.

This Consent Decree is final and binding upon the Parties, their agents, successors and assigns.The Parties will each bear their own costs and attorney fees in this action.//

II.GENERAL INJUNCTIVE RELIEF: NON-DISCRIMINATION AND NON-RETALIATION

National Origin Discrimination: Consistent with Section 703 of Title VII, 42 U.S.C. §2000e-2, Defendant and its officers, agents, managers (including supervisory employees), successors and assigns, are enjoined from discriminating against persons on the basis of national origin, including harassment.

Retaliation: Consistent with Section 704 of Title VII, 42 USC § 2000e-3, Defendant, its officers, agents, managers (including supervisory employees), successors and assigns, are enjoined from engaging in, implementing or permitting any action, policy or practice with the purpose of retaliating against any current or former employee because he or she has in the past, or during the term of this Consent Decree (a) opposed any practice of harassment or other discriminatory acts on the basis of national origin made unlawful under Title VII; (b) filed a Charge of Discrimination alleging any such practice; (c) testified or participated in any manner in any investigation (including, without limitation, any internal investigation undertaken by Defendant), proceeding or hearing in connection with this Lawsuit; (d) was identified as a possible witness in this Lawsuit; or (e) asserted any rights under this Consent Decree.

III. SPECIFIC INJUNCTIVE RELIEF

1. EEO and Anti-Discrimination Policies: Following a court ordered settlement conference on September 4, 2012, the parties agreed to revisions regarding the company's three Equal Opportunity Policies to include, inter alia, definitions of statutory covered bases, examples of prohibited harassment, time frames for internal complaints of discrimination and statutory time frames for filing charges with the EEOC. A copy of the modified policies in a form consistent with its earlier policies, shall be submitted to the EEOC, attention of Linda Ordonio Dixon, Senior Trial Attorney, within fifteen (15) days of entry of the Consent Decree. If the EEOC does not inform Defendant's counsel of any concerns regarding the modified policies within fourteen (14) days of receipt, the policies shall be deemed compliant with this Consent Decree.

2. Distribution of Policies: Defendant shall effectively disseminate its modified policies and procedures by: (a) distributing copies of the policy to all current employees within forty-five (45) days of the date of entry of this Consent Decree; (b) giving a copy of the policy to all new employees within twenty (20) days of the employees' hire; and requiring each newly hired employee who receives a copy of the policies and procedures to sign a statement acknowledging his or her signature.

3. Training of Employees: During the two-year period from entry of this Consent Decree, Defendant will present training on discrimination, harassment and retaliation, including national origin discrimination harassment and retaliation to all employees, management and non- management, at its Red Bluff Millworks facility, as set-forth in Section III, 4, Training Logistics, below. The first training sessions for all employees shall take place within one hundred twenty (120) days of entry of this Consent Decree. The purpose of said training shall be to give participants an understanding of discrimination issues, particularly national origin discrimination and harassment and retaliation, sources of legal protection for discrimination victims, the employees' obligation to report discrimination, the employer's obligation to take preventive, investigative and remedial action with respect to discrimination complaints, and to review company policies (including discipline policies) and practices related to discrimination and retaliation.

4. Training Logistics: The training for management employees shall be a minimum of two (2) hours each year of this Consent Decree. The training for non-management employees shall be a minimum of one (1) hour during each year of this Consent Decree, and may be conducted in two separate thirty minute training sessions in each of the respective years. The training sessions shall be conducted by individuals with established credentials and/or significant experience in the area of employment discrimination training. Defendant agrees to provide a description of each training program and copies of materials to be used to counsel for the EEOC no later than twenty (20) days before the training programs are scheduled to be held.

5. Acknowledgment of Training Attendance: All persons attending mandatory anti-discrimination training pursuant to this Consent Decree shall sign an acknowledgment of their attendance at the training. Defendant shall retain the originals of these acknowledgments. The ...


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