In a 5-4 ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court in June rejected class-action status for an estimated 1.5 million female employees who brought gender-discrimination claims against Walmart, the country’s largest private employer.
The case—Wal-Mart v. Dukes, 10-277, U.S. Supreme Court, 2011—began when three named female plaintiffs claimed that Walmart discriminated by denying them equal pay and promotions in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the federal employment-discrimination statute.
The plaintiffs claimed that local Walmart managers unfairly exercised discretion over pay matters in a way that disproportionately favored male employees. The plaintiffs contended that a corporate culture existed that allowed a “bias against women to infect” the decision-making processes of thousands of Walmart managers.
Decision on class status
The issue before the High Court wasn’t whether Walmart discriminates against wo...(register to read more)