Posted September 12, 2013
Sues Memphis Foods, owner of Memphis KFC, for Sexual Harassment of 16-Year-Old
Federal Agency Charges KFC Store Manager
Discriminated Against Minor
MEMPHIS, TN – Memphis Foods
LLC, the owner of a Memphis KFC restaurant, violated federal law by
subjecting a teenage employee to sexual harassment and retaliation,
the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a
lawsuit announced yesterday (September 11, 2013).
According to the EEOC’s lawsuit, the 16-year-old female worked as a
crew member for the KFC restaurant on Winchester Road in Memphis.
About two months after she began working there, the KFC’s 54
year-old store manager began making unwelcome and offensive comments
and physical contacts. The EEOC further charges that the company
retaliated against the minor by removing her from the work schedule
and firing her within weeks after she reported the harassment to
other management officials.
Sexual harassment and retaliation for complaining about it violate
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The EEOC filed suit in
the U.S. District Court for Western District of Tennessee, Western
Division, (Civil Action No. 2:13-cv-02712) after first attempting to
reach a voluntary pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation
process. The lawsuit asks the court to grant a permanent injunction
preventing Memphis Foods from engaging in or condoning sexual
harassment; and award appropriate back wages, compensatory and
“Sexual harassment and retaliation in the workplace are always
unconscionable, especially when minors are targeted and victimized,”
said Katharine W. Kores, director of the EEOC’s Memphis District
Office, which serves Tennessee, Arkansas and Northern Mississippi.
“This agency considers the protection of minors in the workplace an
important priority for eradicating employment discrimination.”
Memphis Foods LLC is an Arkansas limited liability company that owns
and operates KFC and Taco Bell Restaurants throughout the greater
Memphis area. Overall, the company operates more than 60
restaurants in Tennessee, Arkansas, Kentucky, Illinois and Missouri.
The EEOC recently updated its Youth@Work website (at
which presents information for teens and other young workers about
employment discrimination. The website also contains curriculum
guides for students and teachers and videos to help young workers
learn about their rights and responsibilities in the workforce.
The EEOC is responsible for enforcing federal laws that prohibit
employment discrimination. Further information is available at