Not what you're
looking for? Try an advanced search.
Buy This Entire Record For
AUNGST v. J. C. PENNEY CO.
August 23, 1978
Maxine AUNGST, Individually and on behalf of all others similarly situated, Plaintiff,
J. C. PENNEY COMPANY, INC., Defendant
The opinion of the court was delivered by: WEBER
This action was instituted to redress a pattern and practice of sex discrimination in employment allegedly fostered by defendant. Plaintiff purports to act on her own behalf and on behalf of a class delineated as ". . . all women employed by the defendant since October, 1967, all women presently employed by the defendant and all women who may be employed by the defendant in the future who were, are or will be affected in the future by the policies of the defendant which unlawfully discriminate against women." Defendant is charged, generally, with violating the rights of plaintiff and the class as defined under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e et seq.; the Equal Pay Act of 1963, 29 U.S.C. §§ 206(d) and 216(d); 42 U.S.C. §§ 1985, 1986, and 1988; the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act, 43 Pa.Stat.Ann. § 951 et seq., and Article I, Section 28 of the Pennsylvania Constitution. Jurisdiction is asserted under 42 U.S.C. § 2000e-5(f); 28 U.S.C. §§ 1331, 1332, 1337 and 1343; 28 U.S.C. §§ 2201 and 2202; as well as pendent jurisdiction.
The Court is presently concerned with defendant's motion to dismiss and/or entry for summary judgment. Fed.R.Civ.P. 12(b) and 56(b). Additionally, we shall address plaintiff's motion for class action determination. Fed.R.Civ.P. 23(a) and (b)(2).
The record reveals that plaintiff is Maxine Aungst ("Aungst"); defendant is J. C. Penney Company, Inc. ("J. C. Penney"). From approximately October, 1967 until April 25, 1974, Aungst was employed as a salesperson in the furniture department of J. C. Penney's Logan Valley Mall retail facility located in Altoona, Pennsylvania. Subsequent to her termination, Aungst filed a charge of sex discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"), to-wit,
"Female associates on the selling floor have an enforced dress code of navy blue, black, or brown or grey (sic). I was told to dress "more professionally' (even tho I did abide by the dress code color) because of the dept. I worked in. Family Benefits are denied female employees i.e. hospitalization etc. unless they fill out a form "head of household' (# 1604-9(c)) (I did this & my family was covered) but, the company practices this. Men are required to wear suits or sport jackets but no color is specified. Females are not allowed to work more than 40 hours men are example to cover floor for hours when others are sick or on vacation.
I worked w/J. C. Penney Co. 6 years & 6 mo but just recently during a time when my performance was down which I feel was due to illness, for which I was under a Dr's care, was harassed about these things.
I could answer questions or go into detail in a conversation with someone easier than write it all down.
The company explains away the dress code for women by saying it is easier for a customer to tell which are clerks but each one has to wear a Penney name tag at all times. This is not a company policy but is entirely at the manager's discretion." (EEOC Charge)
We repeat this charge in full because of the disparity between the administrative charge and the allegations of the complaint. In due course, the EEOC issued a right to sue letter and Aungst timely instituted suit in this Court.
The complaint alleges that J. C. Penney has maintained and continues to maintain a pattern and practice of discrimination against women in terms and conditions of employment and employment opportunities in the following particulars:
"23. Defendant has wilfully and intentionally denied equal employment to the plaintiff and the class and has discriminated, continues to discriminate and will discriminate in the future against the plaintiff and the class in the following ways:
(a) In failing and refusing to hire, recruit and place women on the same terms and conditions as comparably qualified men;
(b) In failing and refusing to compensate women employees on the same terms and conditions as comparably qualified men;
(c) In failing and refusing to promote women employees in the same manner and at the same rate as ...
Buy This Entire Record For