Nike Hit With Lawsuit From Ex-Employees Alleging Discrimination

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But in the complaint, attorney Laura Salerno Owens says Nike continues to have a "good-old-boy's culture" in which women enter the company with lower pay, and receive smaller raises and bonuses.

The women claim in the lawsuit that Nike intentionally discriminated against them with regard to salary and promotions.

The women are accusing Nike of violating both state and federal wage equality laws and pursuing a court order that would force the brand to pay employees equally, regardless of gender.

In response to the suit, the company issued the following statement: "Nike opposes discrimination of any type and has a long-standing commitment to diversity and inclusion".

She declined to answer further questions about the suit. The lawsuit claims that Nike is at fault for failing to "assure a non-hostile work environment that provided equal opportunity". CEO Mark Parker said at the time that he was upset to find corporate bullying within the company.

At least 11 Nike executives, including former Nike brand president and presumptive future CEO Trevor Edwards, have left the company since allegations of workplace misconduct first surfaced in March.

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This article has been updated to include a statement from Nike. When the human resources department took no action, she left the company for competitor Adidas. She claimed in the lawsuit that she was paid $20,000 (Dh73,464) a year less in 2017 than a male co-worker doing much the same job.

Cahill also alleges that a former vice president at Nike referred to women by derogatory names and singled out a female employee for harsh criticism, yelling at her in public repeatedly. According to the suit, they also filed official complaints that other female employees were harassed.

Other former employees have now joined the suit, which is seeking a class action settlement. The named plaintiffs in the case are Kelly Cahill and Sara Johnston, "individually and on behalf of others similarly situated". After rejecting his advances, Jonhston says she was treated negatively in the workplace.

Johnston alleges that following a Nike party in 2015, she received inappropriate messages from a male colleague, one with whom she had to work with regularly and was key in deciding her performance reviews. She complained to her boss in early 2016.

They allege that "women's complaints to human resources about discrimination and harassment, including sexual assault, are ignored or mishandled".

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