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Pine Bluff's Huddle House sued for racial harassment | Crime

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Pine Bluff's Huddle House sued for racial harassment
Crime, News
Pine Bluff's Huddle House sued for racial harassment

PINE BLUFF, Ark. (KTHV) – The company who owns Huddle House in Pine Bluff is being sued for alleged racial harassment.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) alleges the business violated federal law by "subjecting a black employee to a hostile work environment because of her race."

According to the EEOC's suit, Huddle House subjected Angela Whitfield, who worked as a shift leader at its Pine Bluff restaurant, to racially offensive language. Among other things, members of Huddle House's management team regularly referred to Whitfield and other black employees as "ghetto," "hood," "hood rat," "Huddle ho's" and used the "N-word" when they visited the restaurant.

EEOC says this conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The lawsuit was filed after they attempted to reach a settlement.

The EEOC says it is, "seeking injunctive relief prohibiting Huddle House from engaging in racial harassment in the future, as well as compensatory and punitive damages for Whitfield."

"We recently celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, yet employees continue to fight for dignity and respect in the workplace," said Katharine W. Kores, director of the EEOC's Memphis District Office, which has jurisdiction over Arkansas, Tennessee and portions of Mississippi. "Employees should not have to endure a racially hostile work environment to earn a living. The EEOC remains committed to eradicating discrimination in the workplace."

EEOC says H2H Enterprises, Inc., is a management consulting services company and a franchise partner of Huddle House, Inc. H2H Enterprises owns three Huddle House restaurants in Pine Bluff, White Hall, and El Dorado, Ark.

The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the EEOC is available on its web site at www.eeoc.gov.

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