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BATAVIA, Ill. -- Discount grocery chain Aldi, Inc. here is the target of a lawsuit that claims the retailer wrongly fired a cashier who said she couldn't work Sundays because of her religious beliefs.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which filed the lawsuit, said Aldi denied reasonable accommodation to Kimberly Bloom, a resident of Farmington, Pa., by not allowing her Sundays off from her job at an Aldi store, also in Farmington.
The store began operating on Sunday in January. Bloom allegedly told her district manager at that time that she could not work on Sundays, because she was a Protestant who observed the Sabbath.
According to the lawsuit, she was scheduled on Sundays anyway, and was fired Feb. 7 after missing work. Aldi offered Bloom time off to attend church, but the EEOC said that move had failed to effectively accommodate her.
The EEOC is seeking reinstatement, back pay, and punitive damages for Bloom, who began working in the store in November 1998.
The EEOC said it filed suit after first trying unsuccessfully to reach a settlement with Aldi.