Tragically, sexual harassment and gender discrimination have existed in workplaces for many years. In 2011, five female employees at KPMG sued the company for $350 million, alleging gender discrimination and sexual harassment.
Last week, the women filed a Title VII class action motion in Federal court. Under Title VII, employees are protected from discrimination based on sex, as well as race, ethnicity and religion. According to a recent article, the class action could involve over 10,000 female employees at KPMG.
Tragically, a 2016 KPMG report found female employees received almost 3 percent less in total compensation than male employees at the company. In the recent motion, the women additionally requested that the court grant their collective action certification under the Equal Pay Act. This Act prohibits employers from paying different wages based on sex.
KPMG continues to deny any claims of gender or pay discrimination. However, data suggests female employees at the company might have trouble receiving promotions. According to the motion, females at KPMG comprise approximately:
- 20 percent of partners
- 25 percent of directors
- 35 percent of managers
- 45 percent of associates
The women’s motion also details disturbing accounts of sexual harassment by male associates and supervisors. The women argue that KPMG has attempted to hide these claims and continues to ignore the behavior.
If the court agrees with the women’s motion, it could have a substantial impact on female employees at KPMG. Additionally, it might leave a precedent for other female employees facing gender and pay discrimination across the nation.