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New Jersey woman to be paid $25,000 in discrimination case

April 28, 2015

Federal investigators have determined that a gym in Ewing, New Jersey, wrongfully terminated an employee in 2013. Planet Fitness will be paying the former employee $25,000. It must also show evidence that it has a policy against discrimination and harassment and that all supervisors and managers are trained on that policy.

The 35-year-old African-American woman alleged that she was passed over for a promotion in favor of a less-qualified male employee and then fired due to her gender and race. Investigators were told by the gym managers that the other employee was promoted largely because he was “more mature, married and has real bills.”

The management of the gym reportedly told the Trenton woman that she was fired because she left the premises one day without telling anyone when she would return. However, investigators found that other employees had done that regularly without facing the same consequences. According to the state attorney general’s office, the reasoning for firing the woman, who had worked there for less than a year was “simply not worthy of belief.”

John J. Hoffman, the state’s acting attorney general, says he hopes that this case will send a message to other New Jersey employers that “we are committed to ensuring equality in the workplace, and to holding accountable those who fail to provide it.”

It’s one thing to suspect that you’ve been treated unfairly in the workplace because of characteristics like gender, race, sexual orientation, age or disability. However, proving it can be a challenge. New Jersey attorneys who specialize in employment law can help determine whether a discrimination case can be brought and work to hold those who are guilty of illegal employment practices accountable.

Source: NJ.com, “Planet Fitness in Ewing pays $25K to former employee who alleged race, gender discrimination,” James McEvoy, Times of Trenton, April. 14, 2015

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