SAN FRANCISCO (CN) – The 9th Circuit allowed Hispanic employees to proceed with a class action accusing a grocery-store chain of pay discrimination.
Judge Hug ruled that the district court abused its discretion by finding the workers lacked the commonality to form a qualifying class.
The defendant, Bashas’ Inc., operates 150 grocery stores under the names Bashas’, Food City and A.J.’s Fine Foods.
The plaintiffs showed evidence that workers at Food City stores, who are predominantly Hispanic, earned between $300 and $6,000 less than workers at the other two brands.
Hug ruled that the district court erroneously found that no wrongdoing took place because the current pay scales are similar.
“In doing so,” Hug wrote, “the district court failed to consider the evidence of past pay disparities and discrimination common to the Hispanic workers at Food City.”