3 female chauffeurs win $130K each in discrimination case with Saudi prince

MINNEAPOLIS -- A federal judge has awarded damages to three Minnesota women who sued after they were dismissed from their chauffeur jobs because a Saudi prince wanted only male drivers.

See Full Article

U.S. District Judge Joan Ericksen on Thursday awarded $130,000 each to Gretchen Cooper, Barbara Herold and Lisa Boutelle. In November, Ericksen ruled in favour of the three women, who filed a gender discrimination lawsuit in 2012 in Minneapolis.

The women received $100,000 each for mental anguish and suffering under the Minnesota Human Rights Act, the Star Tribune reported. Erickson doubled the $15,000 that each woman sought for wage loss, to $30,000, but did not grant punitive damages, saying that while the defendants may have acted unlawfully, the women bringing the lawsuit had not shown they acted with "deliberate disregard or malice."

The women were among 40 drivers hired in October 2010 to chauffeur Prince Abdul-Rahman bin Abdul-Aziz, his family and friends while the prince was treated at Mayo Clinic in Rochester. The lawsuit alleged that the prince and his entourage told the limousine companies they wanted male chauffeurs. Women in Saudi Arabia are prohibited from driving.

Two of the three companies involved have settled with the women. Crown Prince Limousine remained a defendant. Online court records did not list an attorney to comment on behalf of Mohamed Ali Elbashir, who does business in Minnesota as Crown Prince Limousine, or the prince. The Saudi Arabian Embassy in Washington, D.C., was closed Saturday.

The women were represented by Gender Justice, a legal advocacy organization based in St. Paul. Lisa Stratton, one of the women's attorneys, praised the judge's order.

"The key issue for us is people know now that it is not legal in the state of Minnesota or the United States to discriminate because your customer asks you to," Stratton said. "When you do business in the United States, the law of the United States applies."



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • U.K.'s Theresa May, Jeremy Corbyn face tough questions on live TV

    World News CTV News
    LONDON - Prime Minister Theresa May and Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn faced tough questions and a skeptical audience in a live TV event Monday night ahead of next week's parliamentary elections. It was not a debate, but did air policy and stylistic differences between the two foes. Source
  • Alberta on Ontario's road to ruin, report says

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    Is Alberta the new Ontario? A Fraser Institute analysis found the fiscally prudent western province is bleeding more budget red ink per capita than Ontario did in its post-recession heyday of epic deficits. “Until recently, by far the largest deficits of any province since the turn of the century were those run by Ontario in the years during and following the financial crisis of 2008/09 . Source
  • Tiger unharmed after killing zookeeper, British police say

    World News CTV News
    LONDON - British police say a tiger that killed a female zookeeper has not been destroyed. Few details have been released about the incident at Hamerton Zoo Park that claimed the life of 34-year-old zookeeper Rosa King. Source
  • Death toll from thunderstorm in Moscow climbs to 16

    World News CTV News
    MOSCOW -- The death toll from a powerful thunderstorm in Moscow and its suburbs has reached 16 as dozens still remain in hospital, Russian officials said on Tuesday. The Investigative Committee said in a statement on Tuesday that 11 people in Moscow and five others in the suburbs were killed as high winds and rain ripped through the Russian capital on Monday, felling trees, tearing off roofs and damaging over 2,000 cars. Source
  • Copenhagen's Little Mermaid statue doused with paint - again

    World News CTV News
    COPENHAGEN -- Danish officials on Tuesday hosed down Copenhagen's famed Little Mermaid after the statue was found doused with red paint. On the ground in front of the statue was written in the red, in English, "Denmark defend the whales of the Faeroe Islands" -- likely a reference to the drive hunting of pilot whales in the North Atlantic islands during the summer months, Danish media say. Source
  • Bangladesh storm kills 3, destroys thousands of homes

    World News CBC News
    A tropical storm lashed southern Bangladesh on Tuesday, killing at least three people and destroying thousands of poorly built homes in some remote islands in the Bay of Bengal, officials said. Tropical Storm Mora started crossing the country's southern coastal region early in the day. Source
  • Manchester Victoria rail station reopens after suicide blast

    World News CTV News
    LONDON -- The railway station next to Manchester Arena reopened Tuesday, more than a week after an attacker detonated a bomb in a crowd leaving a concert, killing 22 and injuring dozens. Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham and Transport Secretary Chris Grayling were among those who laid wreaths at Victoria station, which also suffered damage in the blast. Source
  • Manuel Noriega, former Panamanian dictator, dies at 83 [Photos]

    World News Toronto Sun
    PANAMA CITY — Former Panamanian dictator Manuel Noriega, a onetime U.S. ally who was ousted as Panama’s dictator by an American invasion in 1989, died late Monday at age 83. Panamanian President Juan Carlos Varela wrote in his Twitter account that “the death of Manuel A. Source
  • Ex-student leader wins Montreal riding for left-leaning Quebec solidaire

    Canada News CTV News
    MONTREAL -- Former Quebec student leader Gabriel Nadeau-Dubois strolled to victory for Quebec solidaire in a provincial byelection in the Montreal riding of Gouin on Monday. Nadeau-Dubois, 26, dominated the field, capturing just more than 69 per cent of the popular vote to cement the win in the riding where he'd been heavily favoured. Source
  • Nighttime, morning bombings in Baghdad kill 27

    World News CBC News
    A massive bombing by ISIS outside a popular ice cream shop in central Baghdad and a rush hour car bomb in another downtown area killed at least 27 people on Tuesday, Iraqi officials said. The attacks come as ISIS militants are steadily losing more territory to U.S. Source