In March, a group of women at the Nike headquarters who’d secretly surveyed their women colleagues about gender discrimination at the company dropped off their results on the CEO’s desk. Shortly after, at least six men at the top of the company had resigned. Last week, the fight for equal pay at Nike’s headquarters continued.
On Thursday, two former employees filed a lawsuit against the footwear giant. Kelly Cahill and Sara Johnston accuse the company of violating federal and state-level equal pay legislation. “At Nike, the numbers tell a story of a company where women are devalued and demeaned,” the lawsuit, which was filed in Oregon federal court, reads. “For many women at Nike, the company hierarchy is an unclimable pyramid—the more senior the job title, the smaller the percentage of women.”
Nike denied the claims through a spokesperson (via Women’s Wear Daily):
“Nike opposes discrimination of any type and has a long-standing commitment to diversity and inclusion. We are committed to competitive pay and benefits for our employees. The vast majority of Nike employees live by our values of dignity and respect for others.”
Cahill and Johnston have filed a hybrid proposed class and collective action against Nike, their attorney Laura Salerno Owens tells Jezebel, and they are still waiting for the court to certify it.