University of Michigan Law School
Civil Rights Litigation Clearinghouse
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Case Name United States v. McHenry County EE-IL-0263
Docket / Court 3:94-cv-50086 ( N.D. Ill. )
State/Territory Illinois
Case Type(s) Equal Employment
Attorney Organization U.S. Dept. of Justice Civil Rights Division
Case Summary
On March 9, 1994 United States of America filed a complaint under Title VII, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e. et seq. (Title VII) in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against McHenry County, the McHenry County Sheriff's Department, and a number of county officials. The United States ... read more >
On March 9, 1994 United States of America filed a complaint under Title VII, 42 U.S.C. § 2000e. et seq. (Title VII) in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois against McHenry County, the McHenry County Sheriff's Department, and a number of county officials. The United States sought injunctive relief, alleging that the defendant had violated Title VII by discriminating on the basis of sex.

The complaint alleged that the defendant discriminated against women by: (1) maintaining policies and practices that generally discriminate against women; (2) depriving women of certain employment opportunities and limiting the employment opportunities available to women; (3) subjecting female employees to a hostile work environment; and (4) failing or refusing to investigate and take remedial action when complaints of harassment or discrimination were brought to their attention. More specifically, the defendant refused to select women for the position of Shift Leader and Assistant Shift Leader, and failed to recruit and hire women as patrol officers. Additionally, the hostile work environment and sexual harassment involved subjecting female employees to sexually explicit and vulgar language, subjecting female employees to unwelcome physical conduct of a sexual nature, and forcing female employees to view sexually explicit drawings and other graphic and vulgar written material.

On August 17, 1994, the District Court (Judge Reinhard) denied the motion dismiss made by all defendants, but granted the "Jail Administrator's" motion to dismiss, because the "Jail Administrator" does not exist for purposes of suing or being sued. United States v. McHenry County, 1994 WL 447419 (N.D. Ill. 1994).

On April 15, 1996, the court granted the motion to intervene made by the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 119 and the Fraternal Order of Police Labor Council.

On September 10, 1996, the court granted the parties' joint motion for final entry of the consent decree. The intervenor appealed the entry of the consent decree. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit dismissed the appeal. On November 13, 2001, the consent decree was terminated and the case was dismissed.

Kaitlin Corkran - 03/05/2008


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Issues and Causes of Action
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Issues
Affected Gender
Female
Defendant-type
Corrections
Law-enforcement
Discrimination-area
Harassment / Hostile Work Environment
Hiring
Promotion
Discrimination-basis
Sex discrimination
General
Pattern or Practice
Retaliation
Plaintiff Type
U.S. Dept of Justice plaintiff
Causes of Action Title VII (including PDA), 42 U.S.C. § 2000e
Defendant(s) McHenry County
Plaintiff Description female employees of McHenry County
Indexed Lawyer Organizations U.S. Dept. of Justice Civil Rights Division
Class action status sought No
Class action status granted No
Prevailing Party Plaintiff
Public Int. Lawyer Yes
Nature of Relief Injunction / Injunctive-like Settlement
Source of Relief Litigation
Settlement
Form of Settlement Court Approved Settlement or Consent Decree
Order Duration 1996 - 2001
Case Closing Year 2001
Case Ongoing No
Additional Resources
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Case Studies Megacases, Diversity, and the Elusive Goal of Workplace Reform
Written: Mar. 01, 2008
By: Nancy Levit (University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law)
Citation: 49 B.C. L. Rev. 367 (2008)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

  Second Generation Employment Discrimination: A Structural Approach
By: Susan Sturm (Columbia Law School)
Citation: 101 Colum. L. Rev. 458 (2001)
[ Detail ] [ External Link ]

Docket(s)
3:94-cv-50086 (N.D. Ill.) 11/13/2001
EE-IL-0263-9000 PDF | Detail
PACER [Public Access to Court Electronic Records]
General Documents
Opinion 08/17/1994 (1994 WL 447419) (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0263-0001 PDF | WESTLAW | Detail
Judges Mahoney, P. Michael (N.D. Ill.) [Magistrate]
EE-IL-0263-9000
Reinhard, Philip Godfrey (N.D. Ill.)
EE-IL-0263-0001 | EE-IL-0263-9000
Monitors/Masters None on record
Plaintiff's Lawyers Libman, Robert S (District of Columbia)
EE-IL-0263-9000
Syfert , Keith Carl (Illinois)
EE-IL-0263-0001 | EE-IL-0263-9000
Defendant's Lawyers Connor, Susan Marie (Illinois)
EE-IL-0263-9000
D'Alba, Joel Abbott (Illinois)
EE-IL-0263-9000
Gable, R. Glenn (Illinois)
EE-IL-0263-0001
Harrison, James T. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0263-0001
McKenney, Harold C. (Illinois)
EE-IL-0263-0001
Pack , Gary William (Illinois)
EE-IL-0263-0001 | EE-IL-0263-9000
Phillips, Michael James (Illinois)
EE-IL-0263-9000
Other Lawyers Gorman, Patrick John (Illinois)
EE-IL-0263-9000

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