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Black strippers awarded $3m in workplace discrimination case

PICTURED: Danny's Downtown Cabaret (Image: Google Maps)

FIVE BLACK strippers have been awarded $3 million (£2.36 million) after a judge ruled they were subjected to worse working conditions than their white colleagues.

The outcome of the year-long case involving Danny’s Downtown Cabaret in Jackson, Mississippi, and a group of African American women was brought by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

The women have been awarded $1.5 million in punitive damages, $1.68 million in compensatory damages and $130,550 in backpay.

The jury’s damages decision has been contested by the lawyer representing Danny’s Downtown Cabaret.

Bill Walter, who is representing the company, said he will request for the damages amount to be reduced and will launch an appeal if the judge does not reduce the amount, NBC News reported.

According to the commission, limitations were placed on when the black women could work and they were fined $25 if the didn’t turn up for a shift. In contrast, white strippers were given flexible schedules and were not fined for not showing up to shifts.

The manager at Danny’s Downtown Cabaret was also said to have used a racial slur against one of the black women working at the establishment. Workers were also forced to dance at another club, Black Diamonds, which meant they faced arrest as they did not have licences to work at that venue.

“The pay and working conditions at Black Diamonds were inferior to those at Danny's, and there was less security there. The dancers who refused to work at Black Diamonds were fined and sent home, and not allowed to work at Danny's,” the EEOC said in a statement.

Marsha Rucker, the EEOC's regional attorney in Birmingham, said: "This case shows the EEOC will sue any employer, operating any type of business, who violates federal anti-discrimination laws, especially those who will not stop discriminating even after being given repeated chances to do so. The EEOC will protect employees in any industry who are subjected to such blatant and repeated discrimination. The jury yesterday sent a powerful message to Danny's and any employer who thinks they are above the law."

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