Mayor Bloomberg’s company, Bloomberg L.P. has been battling a long-running lawsuit contending that Mr. Bloomberg and top managers created a hostile work environment, especially for women. Mr. Bloomberg even had to testify during several hours in 2009.
However, last Wednesday, a Federal Judge dismissed all claims brought by the EEOC before the Court. According to Justice Loretta A. Preska, the EEOC relied too much on anecdotes and not enough on statistics when it accused Bloomberg L.P. of discrimination. The ruling said that the company did not systematically violate the law because it did not treat women who took maternity leave differently from employees who took leaves for other reasons. The Judge added that “a female employee is free to choose to dedicate herself to the company at any cost (and) she will rise in this organization accordingly.”
According to the New York Times, Bloomberg’s managers were accused of crass and sexist comments in a testosterone-fueled workplace. The original complaint, filed in September 2007, also asserted that the company systematically discriminated against mothers and pregnant women by reducing their pay, demoting them or excluding them from the company’s decision process.
“We regret today’s decision, and look forward to proceeding with the individual claims and will assess our options” said the EEOC in a statement after the judgment was rendered.
Indeed, the Federal government may appeal the decision which would lead to a new battle for Mayor Bloomberg and the 65 women who qualified as claimants in the class-action which may lead to individual lawsuits accusing Bloomberg L.P. of discrimination.