A northern Minnesota furniture retailer has agreed to pay $60,000 after the company didn't hire someone because he is transgender.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) on Tuesday said Frizzell Furniture has agreed to pay the job applicant it discriminated against $60,000, as well as change its hiring practices.
The company, which has locations in Bemidji and Walker, didn't hire the applicant for a sales position because he is transgender, with a hiring official telling him he wouldn't "mix well with the customers," the EEOC said.
Gender identity discrimination is a form of sex discrimination and violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The law does not permit discriminatory employment decisions based on customer preferences.
“We appreciate that Frizzell Furniture worked cooperatively with the EEOC to resolve this charge without having to go through protracted litigation,” Julianne Bowman, district director of the EEOC’s Chicago District, said in a statement.
"By revising its hiring procedures and adopting new policies, Frizzell Furniture is taking important steps to promote equal employment opportunity for all job applicants."
In addition to paying the job applicant $60,000, Frizzell Furniture will implement an anti-discrimination policy, improve recordkeeping procedures, provide EEO training to employees, and report any future complaints of discrimination to the EEOC for three years, according to the conciliation agreement.
It will also adopt "more objective criteria" for hiring decisions and use a scoring matrix for job interviews.