Hardee's Settles Discrimination Suit

September 13, 2005 (PLANSPONSOR.com) - St. Louis-based Hardee's has agreed to pay $34,000 to settle a lawsuit claiming that one of its restaurants repeatedly refused to hire a woman whose face is disfigured.

The Associated Press reports that the EEOC said the suit alleges that the woman applied several times, but was never hired, though others with no better qualifications were given jobs. The woman has Treacher Collins Syndrome, a birth defect that caused a malformed cranial bone structure, asymmetrical eye placement and the absence of ears, according to the AP.

In addition, the EEOC claimed that Hardee’s officials threw away the woman’s application and that the discrimination constituted a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

“We found that Hardee’s wouldn’t hire this applicant because she looked different, not because she couldn’t do the work,” said Robert Johnson, regional attorney for the EEOC’s St. Louis office, according to the AP.

The settlement also calls for the chain to apologize in writing and further train its managers and human resources employees. The settlement has been proposed to the US District Court in Kansas City.