Ruling: woman fired illegally

YORK -- A woman fired by a York wheel manufacturer reached a $15,000 settlement with the company amid allegations that she was terminated after she complained about a supervisor using a racial slur, according to a news release from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

The commission, which announced the settlement this week, sued Eagle Alloys, which was doing business as American Eagle Wheel, on behalf of Angelita Sanchez, who was terminated from the company's York site after the complaint about the slur, the release stated.

The slur involved "the 'N-word,'" according to the release.

A woman who answered the phone at American Eagle Wheel's office in York said the company wouldn't discuss the matter.

"Our standard answer is, 'No comment,'" she said.

Lynette Barnes, a regional attorney with the EEOC's district office in Charlotte, could not be reached for comment. The office's jurisdiction includes North Carolina, Virginia and most of South Carolina.

Barnes was quoted in the release as saying that workers "should be free to speak out against inappropriate workplace conduct without fearing retaliation for doing so."

The release does not indicate when the slur was used or when Sanchez was fired. Sanchez could not be reached for comment.

Along with the money for Sanchez, the settlement requires the company to provide annual training for managers, supervisors and employees about discrimination and unlawful retaliation, the release stated.

The company also must post information about employees' rights under federal anti-discrimination laws and provide occasional reports to the commission, according to the release.

The commission enforces federal workplace discrimination laws.