CA: BALLY FITNESS MUST PAY SETTLEMENT
A federal judge has ordered Bally Total Fitness to pay $24,000 to a Sikh man who sued when the company denied him a job after asking if he was Muslim, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission said Wednesday.
Sukdev “Devin” Singh Dhaliwal applied for a sales job with one of Bally’s five Fresno fitness centers in 2004. An interviewer quizzed Dhaliwal, who was born and raised in California, about his religious and ethnic background, and then denied him a job and hired non-Sikh, non-Indian applicants with less experience, according to the commission.
“He was basically asked where he was born, where his parents were born, what religion he subscribed to and whether he was a Muslim,” said EEOC program analyst Linda Li. “He’s very American.”
Under the consent decree approved by U.S. District Judge Jeffrey S. White, Bally must pay Dhaliwal $24,000 in damages and provide training in equal opportunity hiring practices to managers at its Fresno locations.