Supreme Court rules for Wal-Mart in massive job discrimination lawsuit
June 20th, 2011
10:21 AM ET

Supreme Court rules for Wal-Mart in massive job discrimination lawsuit

The Supreme Court put the brakes on a massive job discrimination lawsuit against mega-retailer Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., saying sweeping class-action status that could potentially involve hundreds of thousands of current and former female workers was simply too large.

The ruling Monday was a big victory for the nation's largest private employer, and the business community at large.

The high-profile case– perhaps the most closely watched of the high court's term– is among the most important dealing with corporate versus worker rights that the justices have ever heard, and could eventually impact nearly every private employer, large and small.

Toobin: Why justices shut down Wal-Mart case

Gisel Ruiz, Executive Vice President for Wal-Mart U.S., said in a statement the company was "pleased" with the court's ruling.

"Walmart has had strong policies against discrimination for many years. The Court today unanimously rejected class certification and, as the majority made clear, the plaintiffs’ claims were worlds away from showing a companywide discriminatory pay and promotion policy," the statement said. "By reversing the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decision, the majority effectively ends this class action lawsuit.

“Walmart has a long history of providing advancement opportunities for our female associates and will continue its efforts to build a robust pipeline of future female leaders.”

The case is Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. v. Dukes (10-277).

soundoff (948 Responses)
  1. Leonid Brezhnev

    Why am I not surprised? The bias of certain Supreme Court justices towards big business has been apparent for a while now. Maybe we should impeach Roberts and the other teabaggers.

    June 20, 2011 at 10:42 am | Report abuse |
    • Dean

      All liberal left-wing dingbats on the Supreme Court voted for ending the lawsuit. They should be all impeached.

      June 20, 2011 at 10:47 am | Report abuse |
  2. AGeek

    Whiskey Tango Foxtrot. So now our "Last line" court has a case "too big"? Too big for what, justice?! Someone turn off the lights on the United Corporations of America.

    If the SCOUTS says this is "too large", then either 1) the US is too large or 2) the corporation is too large.

    June 20, 2011 at 10:43 am | Report abuse |
  3. Moosemeat

    So CNN isn't going to give specifics on the case? Nice journalism.

    June 20, 2011 at 10:43 am | Report abuse |
  4. greebo

    Dear "Little People", @#&K off! You can't touch us, we own the government...haha!

    Love, the top %

    June 20, 2011 at 10:43 am | Report abuse |
  5. teacher2Kids

    Is that what our country has been reduced to. Violate enough people and then you don't get punished. Well I will never step in a Walmart again and if all the women in this country do the same they will get punished. Women who work for walmart should walk off their jobs. Try to run them with no women customers or employees!!

    June 20, 2011 at 10:43 am | Report abuse |
  6. marcel randall

    The current high court with it's five right wing activist judges is more crooked than the mississippi river. just plain corrupt like the rest of our paid for politicians and government.
    our capitalist corrupt society is doomed to fail. can't wait

    June 20, 2011 at 10:43 am | Report abuse |
    • Dean

      It seems that all the liberal left-wing dingbats also voted against continuing the suit. I love how the liberals jump to a conclusion and start their hate filled ranting before knowing the facts. The sad thing is that you are allowed to vote with the same lack of knowledge of facts.

      June 20, 2011 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
  7. Nope

    Too large? Too bad! Of course corporate lapdogs like Scalia and Thomas (who has received tons of money and gifts from corporations and should be kicked off the court) will NEVER side with the working men and women of this country. They are determined to revert worker's rights back to the Victorian age.

    June 20, 2011 at 10:43 am | Report abuse |
  8. Sean Presley

    When do we support 30 to 90 day mandated job employment. When do we support employment bills and legislature that help the United States recover from recession are an intradiction to Supreme Court Decission? NOW!!!

    June 20, 2011 at 10:43 am | Report abuse |
  9. RG

    We're all doomed to corporate slavery, approved by the Supreme Court. Now Wall-Mart will have more money for unlimited campaign contributions. Way to buy justice!

    June 20, 2011 at 10:44 am | Report abuse |
  10. OttersFlyNavy

    Man, so there's a sweet spot in dicking people over? Less than the amount that you need for a class-action, and you're unlikely to lose because people can't afford good lawyers, and more than 100,000 and now they're not allowed to sue you together! As long as you can get your numbers up quick, here's precedence for being a giant @ss to almost everyone!

    June 20, 2011 at 10:44 am | Report abuse |
  11. U.S. Common Sense

    Since not all women at Wal-Mart were being paid less, the lawsuit itself was bound to fail to begin with. That said, there shouldn't be any wage discrepencies based on gender. The companies need to weed out the lower-level managers who do the hiring and replaced them with those without gender biases. With that said, that doesn't mean we suddenly have to pay women more than men as a knee-jerk reaction, but rather simply pay people for the work they do and the years of their experience.

    June 20, 2011 at 10:44 am | Report abuse |
  12. DEE

    Like we didn't see this coming, when they passed the law to get rid of the cap on what big business can give to campaigns we should have known something was wrong.

    June 20, 2011 at 10:44 am | Report abuse |
  13. Big George in Big D

    Hooray for the Supreme Court! If these women don't want to work for Wal-Mart, or any store in that category, then don't. But don't go there then complain! Thank goodness for the "teabaggers" for trying to rein in big government Nobama spending!! Justice Roberts is a great jurist!

    June 20, 2011 at 10:44 am | Report abuse |
    • steeve-o

      The women of the world would now see justice if they simply refuse to shop there. I'll be sure every woman I know hears about this.

      June 20, 2011 at 10:45 am | Report abuse |
  14. steeve-o

    So I get it... if you're going to practice discrimination against employees, make sure you discriminate against as many as you can, so that a class action lawsuit can be deemed too large. Ridiculous.
    Any consideration that if a company is large enough to have a class action lawsuit deemed to big, then the company itself is too big? Or that of all companies that could weather a class action lawsuit of that scale, Wal Mart would be one of the only companies, next to some big oil company?

    June 20, 2011 at 10:44 am | Report abuse |
    • DEE

      Guess Wal-Mart is in the To Big To Fail Category because a lawsuit like this would have cost some much we would have seen the end of Wal-Mart.

      June 20, 2011 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
  15. Red Pison

    I was against this from the start because while I am for equal rights if a woman cannot do the same workload as a man, then she should not earn as much or more than a man who would have to work twice as hard to pick up her slack. Ladies, you cannot get your cake and eat it too. You want even more special privileges, not equal rights.

    June 20, 2011 at 10:44 am | Report abuse |
    • Choco monster

      We should have put Walmart out of business, this would have put China out of business!

      June 20, 2011 at 10:46 am | Report abuse |
    • Apalled

      This is one of the most psychologically twisted comments I've read. The analogy is false - there's no cake to begin with. It's a fight for equal rights. Good grief.

      June 20, 2011 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
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