DFEH AND DERREL’S MINI STORAGE, INC. AGREE TO SETTLE EMPLOYMENT AND HOUSING DISCRIMINATION CASE
April 17, 2017
For Immediate Release
Revised policies lift ban on children in onsite housing during business hours
Sacramento – The Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) announced today that it has settled a combined employment and housing discrimination case filed against Derrel’s Mini Storage, Inc. (DMS) on behalf of Charlyn and Kyle Foote, former facility managers with DMS.
As a result of the settlement, DMS, which operates more than 50 mini storage facilities in central California, has agreed to revise its policies covering the on-site housing it provides to its facility managers, in addition to other terms. “We commend DMS for agreeing to adopt new policies that ensure facility managers are able to safely work and live on-site with their families,” said DFEH Director Kevin Kish.
Charlyn Foote was pregnant when she and her husband accepted employment and residence at a DMS storage facility in Bakersfield. Prior DMS policies would have banned the infant from their onsite housing during operational hours and on the weekend.
In its claim, DFEH alleged violations of the Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), which protects the civil rights of all Californians to seek, obtain, and hold housing without discrimination based on familial status, and to seek, obtain and hold employment without discrimination on account of sex.
During DFEH’s investigation, DMS asserted that the FEHA does not apply to employer-provided housing provided as a condition of employment and claimed business justifications for the policy. After an unsuccessful attempt to mediate the claim, the DFEH filed suit in Kern County Superior Court.
“This was an important case to confirm that the FEHA extends to all housing in California, including housing provided by employers to their employees as a condition of employment,” said DFEH Director Kevin Kish. “A policy prohibiting children from the business premises, including on-site housing, during operating hours made it extremely difficult for parents or guardians with children to work as facility managers for DMS. The revised policy allows facility managers the same freedoms all residents should have in their home while addressing DMS’s business concerns.”
CRD is the state agency charged with enforcing California’s civil rights laws. Formerly known as the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH), the mission of CRD is to protect the people of California from unlawful discrimination in employment, housing, public accommodations, and state-fund programs and activities, and from hate violence and human trafficking. For more information, visit calcivilrights.ca.gov.