EEOC finds basis for racial discrimination at Wet Seal

Posted: December 05, 2012

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has found a basis for Nicole Cogdell's claim that she was racially discriminated against at the clothing retailer Wet Seal's King of Prussia store - the case now moves to federal court.

Cogdell, 41, an African-American who is now a community liaison for Chester Mayor John Linder, said she was dismissed from her job because a Wet Seal vice president had complained in an e-mail that there were too many African-Americans working at the store and that Cogdell, who was rated "outstanding," was not right for the job.

In a statement, the company said it would fight Cogdell's claim arising from the alleged actions by the vice president, now gone from the company. The company said it was cooperating with EEOC.

Cogdell and two African-American store managers, both of whom worked locally, filed a parallel case in July in federal court in California, where Wet Seal is based. That lawsuit, which seeks class-action status based on racial discrimination, is still pending.

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