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Walmart’s Gender Woes

Walmart’s Gender Woes

Eight years ago, Walmart faced the largest gender discrimination case ever brought against an employer. The Supreme Court spared the company that time by saying that the lawsuit was too large to constitute a class action law suit (it represented 1.5 million Walmart employees).

But history is about to repeat itself: on February 1 2019, almost 100 workers filed gender discrimination lawsuits against Walmart, and they allege denial of equal pay for certain salaried management and retail store positions. The plaintiffs in the new lawsuits include current and former Walmart employees who left the store in the early to late 2000s.

Lindsey Wagner, an attorney representing the plaintiffs explained: “There was a culture at Walmart that existed way before 1999 and continued on, and still continues on, and the circumstances that women have been selected for various positions with no opportunity for growth and no opportunity for promotion.” When new employees are hired at Walmart, most of the women are placed into associate or cashier roles, whereas men are placed in electronics or sporting goods departments where they are then fast-tracked for promotions.

Walmart responded: “Walmart has a strong policy against discrimination in place for many years, and we continue to be a great place for women to work and advance. The allegations from these plaintiffs are not representative of the positive experiences that millions of women have had working at Walmart.”