The five employees were all allegedly demoted, terminated, or forced out after they complained about the harassment. They claim that both dealerships knew about and tolerated a racially and sexually hostile work environment from 2002-2005 where female employees were propositioned for sexual favors and were called derogatory names.
The lawsuit claims that bosses at Bell Road Kia and Bell Road Automall often viewed pornography on company computers, and one manager masturbated while sitting behind a female employee.
The employees also allege that racial harassment and the use of racial slurs was common at the dealerships. One manager allegedly told a black employee that he was “only needed when there was a black customer so he could speak his ebonics and close the deal.”
Robert Alexander, owner of Bell Road Kia, said, “We have no comment on the settlement or allegations with EEOC. We are family-owned and operated, we strive for a friendly and happy work environment for our employees.”
Robert Alexander and Allen Holzhauer sold the auto mall in 2007, but continue to manage Big Bell Road Kia.