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On October 5, 2023, REAL Women in Trucking, a non-profit organization that advocates for women truck drivers, and three women truck drivers filed a class action hiring discrimination charge against Stevens Transport, one of the nation’s largest refrigerated trucking companies. The charge, filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) by the National Women’s Law Center and co-counsel Peter Romer-Friedman, alleges that the trucking company routinely refuses to hire women truck drivers, or substantially delays hiring them because the company only allows women to train for driving positions with women trainers, and Stevens does not have enough women trainers to provide timely training to the qualified women drivers who apply. In 2014, a federal judge declared that such same-sex training policies violate Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. Yet, almost 10 years later, Stevens continues to use discriminatory same-sex training practices.
The EEOC charge describes how our clients Kim Howard, Ashli Streeter, and a third woman driver applied for truck driver positions at Stevens Transport but were all denied jobs due to the company’s same-sex training policy and the lack of female trainers. The charge details how, despite Stevens advertising immediate openings for drivers, women who contacted the company were informed of a “freeze on hiring women” and a lengthy waitlist for women who wanted to start the required training.
“Trucking companies think they’re helping women by only letting them train with women,” said Desiree Wood, President of REAL Women in Trucking, a non-profit that advocates for women truck drivers and one of the complainants in this action. “That’s totally wrong. Women truck drivers want an equal opportunity to train, start their careers, and earn a decent living—just like male truck drivers!”