Jul 21 2011
Jury awards $20,000 to a Muslim baghead for her employment lawsuit against Abercrombie & Fitch. But at least no punitive damages.
(A&F deserved to lose for continuing to hire muslim women who refuse to comply with the dress code by wearing trash bags on their heads at work)
Tulsa World A federal jury awarded $20,000 in compensatory damages Wednesday to a Tulsa woman who was not hired to work at a local Abercrombie Kids store because she wears a headscarf, but jurors opted not to award her any punitive damages.
U.S. District Judge Gregory Frizzell turned down the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission’s request for an injunction against the company. Still, Samantha Elauf, 20, said she was “very excited” by the outcome and that she is glad she made her situation public.
The EEOC sued Abercrombie & Fitch on Elauf’s behalf in September 2009, alleging that the company practiced religious discrimination when it chose not to hire her to work at an Abercrombie Kids store at Woodland Hills Mall in June 2008.
Frizzell ruled last month that the company failed to establish that granting Elauf an exception to its “Look Policy” would have caused it undue hardship. Because the judge had already found Abercrombie liable, the only issue before the jury was what – if any – damages should be awarded.
EEOC regional attorney Barbara Seely told the jury during her closing argument that Elauf – who was born in the United States – had never been discriminated against before, hasn’t gotten over how she was treated, and will always remember it. (Oh Boo Hoo. Go live in a country where it’s OK to dress like a slave)
Elauf had testified Tuesday that she felt insulted and disrespected after she discovered that she was not hired because of the scarf. Seely told the jury that the company wanted its sales associates – or models, as Abercrombie calls them – to look like “cookie-cutter kids.” (And they have the right to do that)