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Former Walmart employee sues using Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund

A former hourly employee heard about the Time’s Up movement through the media and is now among the first to benefit as she sues for sexual harassment.

Former Walmart employee sues using Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund
[Photo: Marc Nozell/Wikimedia Commons]
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Gina Pitre is among the first to use the Time’s Up Legal Defense Fund set up by Hollywood A-listers to sue her former employer Walmart. Pitre worked in the retail giant’s fulfillment center in Iberville, Miss. earning $11.50 an hour when she said a supervisor grabbed her breasts and made “unwelcome sexual comments,” according to her lawsuit.

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Pitre had filed a harassment suit in 2008 against the managers of the Boomtown Casino in Biloxi, Miss. (which resulted in the dismissal of certain workers and a settlement). She initially retained a lawyer on her own for this case, but that attorney was reluctant to go up against Walmart. Pitre will now benefit from the Time’s Up Fund for a referral to another lawyer and about $3,000 for their initial fees. If the case goes to trial, the fund will provide up to $100,000 for fees.

Walmart said it had conducted a “comprehensive investigation” into the allegations “could not substantiate a violation of our Discrimination and Harassment Prevention Policy.” In a statement to the New York Times, Walmart also said, “We do not tolerate discrimination or harassment of any kind and thoroughly investigate all sexual harassment allegations.”

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About the author

Lydia Dishman is a reporter writing about the intersection of tech, leadership, and innovation. She is a regular contributor to Fast Company and has written for CBS Moneywatch, Fortune, The Guardian, Popular Science, and the New York Times, among others.

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