Macy's Criminal History Discrimination
Were you denied a job because of a background check?
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On Wednesday, June 26, 2019, Outten and Golden LLP, along with the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. and Youth Represents, filed a class action lawsuit against Macy’s, Inc., owner and operator of hundreds of retail stores (collectively “Macy’s”), challenging its use of an overbroad and unnecessarily punitive criminal history screen in making hiring and termination decisions. Plaintiff The Fortune Society (“Fortune”) brings the lawsuit on behalf of itself and its participants seeking to hold Macy’s accountable for violations of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title VII”) and the New York City Human Rights Law (“NYCHRL”).
Founded in 1967, The Fortune Society is a nonprofit community-based organization with a mission to support the successful community reentry of individuals involved with the criminal justice system. Through an array of critical programming, Fortune provides much needed reentry-related services—including job training and placement services—to approximately 6,500 people each year.
On May 15, 2017, Outten & Golden LLP filed a Charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”) on behalf of Fortune against Macy’s, alleging that the retailer’s criminal background check policies and practices used to screen job applicants and employees violate Title VII and the NYCHRL. On April 2, 2019, the EEOC issued Fortune a Notice of Right to Sue.
On September 3, 2020, Judge Ronnie Abrams of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York granted Plaintiffs’ motion to preliminarily approve a settlement requiring Macy’s to reform its background check practices and pay $1.8 million in monetary class relief.
Outten & Golden is dedicated to representing employees to protect their rights against injustices in the workplace. Our legal team is committed to advancing the rights of individuals with criminal records who seek gainful employment.