June 9, 2022
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tammy Mangan, Director of Marketing
STERLING JEWELERS AND COHEN MILSTEIN ANNOUNCE AGREEMENT
IN CLASS ACTION LITIGATION
Sterling Jewelers and Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll are pleased to announce an agreement which, subject to approval by the Arbitrator, will resolve a legal dispute initiated in 2008 that involved allegations of gender discrimination in pay and promotions practices on behalf of a class consisting of approximately 68,000 members. Under the agreement, Sterling Jewelers, a subsidiary of Signet Jewelers, agrees to pay $175 million, with payments to class members totaling approximately $125 million and the remainder to class counsel for attorneys’ fees and costs.
“For the past four years, we’ve been successfully transforming Signet’s business model and culture. I want to thank our dedicated team members for helping to create our welcoming and inclusive environment where everyone is invited to be their authentic self. We believe prioritizing diversity, equity and inclusion grows high-functioning teams and fosters a culture of appreciation and development,” said Gina Drosos, CEO of Signet Jewelers. “This settlement is an important step in bringing closure to a nearly 15-year-old case. We look forward to continuing our focus on diversity as an important business strategy for Signet, and propelling the innovation, growth, and opportunity that allows our team and company to shine.”
“On behalf of our legal team, we applaud the courage of our clients in the pursuit of this case of singular importance to protecting the rights of women in the workplace. This settlement provides for significant monetary relief for our clients and ensures that the practices that gave rise to this case will not recur. And we applaud Sterling Jewelers for undertaking important and meaningful changes to its workplace policies, which have moved it forward as a leader in gender equality,” said Joseph Sellers, of Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC, lead class counsel.
As part of the company’s transformation in recent years, Signet has made diversity, equity, and inclusion an integral part of its business strategy. Investing in team members to help unleash their full potential has been, and continues to be, key. This includes structuring development programs around Signet’s Leadership Traits to guide store team members who are interested in promotion to manager-level positions. In addition, Signet has discontinued the pay and promotions practices at issue in the lawsuit. Signet also will continue to offer its mentorship programs and leadership training for women, and its robust system for reporting and investigating workplace complaints. Today, Signet has a highly engaged team and is proud to be a Great Place to Work-Certified™ company, and for the last four consecutive years, listed on the Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index.
More information on Signet’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion is outlined in its recently released 2022 Corporate Citizenship & Sustainability Report. That report also includes an overview of the opportunities for team members to engage in personal and professional learning and development programs, business resource groups and more.
About Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC
Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC is a premier U.S. plaintiffs’ law firm, handling high-profile and precedent-setting litigation. With over 100 attorneys across the country, Cohen Milstein has offices in Washington, DC, Chicago, IL, Denver, CO, New York, NY, Palm Beach Gardens, FL, Philadelphia, PA, and Raleigh, NC.
Class Counsel also includes:
Burr & Smith
Sam J. Smith
Loren B. Donnell
Thomas A. Warren Law Offices, P.L.
Thomas A. Warren