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Wal-Mart Stores sued by five women in Wisconsin for gender bias

New York -- Five women in Wisconsin have filed suit against Wal-Mart Stores, claiming the retailer denied them and other female employees equal pay and equal opportunities, the Journal Sentinel reported. The suit, which also seeks class-action status, claims Wal-Mart discriminated against female employees in the chain's Region 14, which includes stores in Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana and Illinois.

“Women at Wal-Mart were told by management that women deserved less pay and fewer promotions than men because men had families to support,” plaintiffs’ lawyer Jim Kaster of Minneapolis-based Nichols Kaster PLLP, said in a press statement.

The complaint was filed at the U.S. courthouse in Madison, Wisconsin on Feb. 20, which is the same day a similar case was dismissed as untimely by a federal judge in Nashville, Tenn.

It is the fifth regional class-action against Wal-Mart since the Supreme Court struck down the attempted national class action (Dukes v. Wal-Mart case) in 2011.

"We’ve said all along that if someone believes they have been treated unfairly, they deserve to have their timely, individual claims heard in court," Wal-Mart spokesman Randy Hargrove said in the report. "These individual claims being made by the plaintiffs just don’t match the positive experiences that hundreds of thousands of women have had working at Walmart. We continue to be a great place for women to work and advance."

The case is Ladik v. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., 13-cv-123, U.S. District Court, Western District of Wisconsin (Madison).

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