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Court Backs Firing of Waitress Without Makeup
Reuters ^ | 12/29/04

Posted on 12/29/2004 8:39:47 AM PST by freespirited

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - A female bartender who refused to wear makeup at a Reno, Nevada, casino was not unfairly dismissed from her job, a U.S. federal appeals court ruled on Tuesday.

Darlene Jespersen, who had worked for nearly 20 years at a Harrah's Entertainment Inc casino bar in Reno, Nevada, objected to the company's revised policy that required female bartenders, but not men, to wear makeup.

A previously much-praised employee, Jespersen was fired in 2000 after the firm instituted a "Beverage Department Image Transformation" program and she sued, alleging sex discrimination.

In a 2-1 decision, a three-judge panel of the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a lower court ruling in favor of Harrah's. All three judges are males appointed by Democratic presidents.

"We have previously held that grooming and appearance standards that apply differently to women and men do not constitute discrimination on the basis of sex," Judge Wallace Tashima wrote for the majority.

He cited the precedent of a 1974 case in which the court ruled that a company can require men to have short hair but allow long hair on women.

The Lambda Legal Defense Fund, a gay rights group that backed Jespersen's suit, had argued that forcing female employees to have different standards than men was unlawful under rules, known as Title VII, against discrimination on race, color, religion, sex or national origin.

The ruling found, however, that the casino's appearance standards were no more burdensome for women than for men.

In a dissenting opinion, Judge Sidney Thomas backed the reasoning of the plaintiff. "Harrah's fired Jespersen because of her failure to confirm to sex stereotypes, which is discrimination based on sex and is therefore impermissible under Title VII," he wrote.

"The distinction created by the majority opinion leaves men and women in services industries, who are more likely to be subject to policies like the Harrah's 'Personal Best' policy, without the protection that white-collar professionals receive," he wrote.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: 9thcircuit; dieseldyke; harrahs; largemarge; makeup; notamilf; sexdiscrimation; sexdiscrimination; waitress; workplace; yikes
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To: All

On the surface, to some, this make look like a case of discrimination but in reality it isn't. I think the court was correct in it's decision based on the fact that men and women are indeed different and holding them to different apearence standards is well within the rights of a company. For instance, the long hair and short hair ruling. Companies can and should be able to set standards of dress and apearence for their employees,it is their company and if you don't like their rules quit your job.


101 posted on 12/29/2004 9:52:08 AM PST by calex59
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To: Petronski

I was thinking Aqua Velva®, or maybe Lectric Shave®.

Or Hi Karate, if they still make it.


102 posted on 12/29/2004 9:52:35 AM PST by pissant
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To: Skooz
Well, I could tell you a story..........about a concert in 1981......and a large bottle of Old Charter........and picking up some ladies........and waking up the next morning.........

The term "coyote ugly" was coined to describe mornings just like that. We've all got a few in our closet; hell, for others, we are the ones in the closet.

103 posted on 12/29/2004 9:52:35 AM PST by Hemingway's Ghost (Spirit of '75)
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To: freespirited
Let me see, what's really earth shattering today. This "makeup", "no makeup" tussle or the situation in South Asia. Hmmmmmmmm.

And certainly, no pun intended.

104 posted on 12/29/2004 9:53:34 AM PST by Oreo Kookey (How, indeed, do we click our tongues at beheadings and look the other way from abortion? I weep.)
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To: Hillary's Lovely Legs
Thanks. Maybe we should spread the word.

"Who IS that on the cover of your book?" LOL!

105 posted on 12/29/2004 9:53:41 AM PST by Quilla
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To: MineralMan

you are easy to please, my friend.


106 posted on 12/29/2004 9:55:26 AM PST by pissant
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To: Oreo Kookey

by golly, there is 75 posts on the tsunami. Have at 'em. Cheers.


107 posted on 12/29/2004 9:56:59 AM PST by pissant
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To: Quilla
Here we are all going to the commercial site at 6am in the limo.

The crew setting up the shoot. The woman in the white shirt is Leslie Blodgett, owner of Bare Minerals.


108 posted on 12/29/2004 9:59:07 AM PST by Hillary's Lovely Legs (Santa, Shmanta, just send an unlimited Black Amex Card and I am set.)
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To: Jay777

Maybe you just shouldn't start your own business!

Do you really want the government telling you how to run it?



109 posted on 12/29/2004 9:59:20 AM PST by Bigh4u2
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To: Hillary's Lovely Legs

OMG, I thought you were kidding! You really were a before and after model. That is fabulous.


110 posted on 12/29/2004 10:04:09 AM PST by Quilla
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To: Quilla

I may be a model for the company, but I don't get any discounts!!!!

I do swear by the makeup though, I don't use anything else.


111 posted on 12/29/2004 10:06:50 AM PST by Hillary's Lovely Legs (Santa, Shmanta, just send an unlimited Black Amex Card and I am set.)
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To: evad

I think a little gender verification is in order. Go ahead, you do it. I'll witness from a safe distance.


112 posted on 12/29/2004 10:13:35 AM PST by kylaka
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To: MineralMan
"....bad mullet..."

Department of Redundancy Department

113 posted on 12/29/2004 10:15:09 AM PST by muir_redwoods
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To: cyborg

................and we all like a cocktail waitress with tips.....................sorry!


114 posted on 12/29/2004 10:16:01 AM PST by bigsigh
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To: cyborg

Bartenders have tip jars too....so you were correct in assuming she'd get more tips no matter what side of the bar she was on.
Stupid men....the better a woman looks the more money they give? What losers they are. :p


115 posted on 12/29/2004 10:17:45 AM PST by zoobee
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To: Damifino
why should she be forced to wear it now?

Because the company changed the rules. They are allowed to do that.

116 posted on 12/29/2004 10:20:01 AM PST by krb (TANSTAAFB)
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To: MineralMan

Makeup would make no difference, honestly. They must have wanted to get rid of her because she's just butchy in general.


117 posted on 12/29/2004 10:20:02 AM PST by DaughterOfAnIwoJimaVet (Governor Rossi was robbed.)
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To: Hemingway's Ghost

Maybe if KISS's makeup person did a job on her it would be sufficient.


118 posted on 12/29/2004 10:24:56 AM PST by justshutupandtakeit (Public Enemy #1, the RATmedia.)
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To: justshutupandtakeit
Maybe if KISS's makeup person did a job on her it would be sufficient.

As it stands now, she could play "Geddy Lee" in any Rush tribute band.

119 posted on 12/29/2004 10:28:35 AM PST by Hemingway's Ghost (Spirit of '75)
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To: zoobee

LOL yep men giving pretty wimmin stuff has been going on since the biblical times.


120 posted on 12/29/2004 10:30:08 AM PST by cyborg (http://mentalmumblings.blogspot.com/)
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To: zoobee
the better a woman looks the more money they give?

Beauty deserves tribute.

121 posted on 12/29/2004 10:30:51 AM PST by Freebird Forever (HAPPY GNU YEAR !!!)
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To: freespirited
I once saw a show about behind the scenes at Disneyland. Talk about regulations! They regulate footwear and clothing. I think they even have guidelines for mens hair length. Everyone has to look very, very "clean cut". I don't see how this is any different. When thinking of Vegas I don't think of butchy bartenders. It has a glamorous image and that's the image they want to present.

Maybe she can get a job down the street at Bally's. There was one cocktail waitress out in the casino who I swear was 75 years old if she was a day. She was wearing the little tiny cocktail waitress outfit and everything serving drinks at the craps table.
122 posted on 12/29/2004 10:33:46 AM PST by retrokitten
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To: MineralMan

Same difference. When I tended bar, I always wore slacks, a white collared shirt and a vest. Kind of an old-time bartender look. Hair groomed, shoes shined, cleanly shaven. You can make a fortune off tips that way. Except in college bars. College kids don't tip, no matter what.


123 posted on 12/29/2004 10:36:27 AM PST by Richard Kimball (Crawford Pirates, Texas State Football Champions!!!!!!!)
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To: MineralMan

That explains the gay rights legal team.


124 posted on 12/29/2004 10:37:51 AM PST by airborne (Dear Lord, please be with my family in Iraq. Keep them close and safe.)
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To: zoobee

"Bartenders have tip jars too....so you were correct in assuming she'd get more tips no matter what side of the bar she was on.
Stupid men....the better a woman looks the more money they give? "

Not this man. I tip based on service, not the appearance of the server. All a bartender has to do to get a good tip from me is make my darned drink right and not ignore me when my glass is empty.


125 posted on 12/29/2004 10:38:32 AM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: BigWaveBetty

I had been wondering about that stuff as well. I was pretty amazed at the tv commericals, but still skeptical (it is TV, afer all, lol).

Thanks to your own experiences, though, I think I may have to take the plunge and get some as well. Thanks for sharing.


126 posted on 12/29/2004 10:42:14 AM PST by exnavychick (Just my two cents, as usual.)
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To: zoobee
the better a woman looks the more money they give?

Welcome to earth.

127 posted on 12/29/2004 10:48:47 AM PST by Skooz (Overtaxed host organism for the parasitical State)
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To: zoobee

It's dumb, but true. I had some guy tip me $20 once because he liked the color of my hair. (Red) Stone sober, he was, and refused to take the money back.

He was a Hispanic gentleman, and wasn't trying to pick me up. A weird way to compliment me, (especially since I can't take credit for it, lol) but the thought was nice.


128 posted on 12/29/2004 10:48:53 AM PST by exnavychick (Just my two cents, as usual.)
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To: Richard Kimball

Except in college bars. College kids don't tip, no matter what.
___________________________________________________________

Nope, and sometimes they try to pay for their drinks with change. One night, some kid did that (we're talking nickles and pennies!) and my bartender got so mad he threw the money at the wall and told him that if he had to raid the piggy bank to drink that he shouldn't even come in. It was freaky, but kinda funny.


129 posted on 12/29/2004 10:51:20 AM PST by exnavychick (Just my two cents, as usual.)
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To: exnavychick

College kids generally have to raid the piggy bank for virtually every expenditure.


130 posted on 12/29/2004 10:54:59 AM PST by Skooz (Overtaxed host organism for the parasitical State)
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To: Skooz

I know. That's what was so freaky about his blow-up. It was funny to me because this was our most level-headed bartender, but the night was so crazy-busy it got to him.

I'd never seen him lose it like that.


131 posted on 12/29/2004 11:10:39 AM PST by exnavychick (Just my two cents, as usual.)
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To: cyborg

It doesn't matter if they didn't have the policy for 50 years. They have it now. At my work, I am required to dress a specific way. If I do not (or refuse) I am not complying with company policy. I could be fired. They can change whatever policy they want. I can either conform, or I can find another job.


132 posted on 12/29/2004 11:49:55 AM PST by Conservative Me
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To: Jay777

Should the court be able to force you to hire a waitress or bartender?


133 posted on 12/29/2004 12:19:34 PM PST by Voice in your head ("The secret of Happiness is Freedom, and the secret of Freedom, Courage." - Thucydides)
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To: All

http://www.motherjones.com/news/hellraiser/2001/03/hellraiser.html


134 posted on 12/29/2004 12:22:42 PM PST by Ellesu
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To: Oreo Kookey

Lighten up...don't like the thread, bypass...


135 posted on 12/29/2004 12:34:13 PM PST by dakine
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To: cyborg

Lol, no of course it wouldn't matter. As far as I know, wearing make up doesn't improve your job skills.

Thinking about it, I recall older cocktail servers who took care of slot machine players that were perhaps around this woman's age. They wore sensible heels and more modest skirt lengths. Of course this was on the Vegas strip many years ago ;-)


136 posted on 12/29/2004 3:51:33 PM PST by TheSpottedOwl ("In the Kingdom of the Deluded, the Most Outrageous Liar is King".)
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To: Hillary's Lovely Legs

Are you the one before or after? :)


137 posted on 12/29/2004 4:00:57 PM PST by HuntsvilleTxVeteran ("SAK")
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To: calex59
Companies can and should be able to set standards of dress and apearence for their employees,it is their company and if you don't like their rules quit your job.

This is true. I also agree that this case doesn't fit my criteria of discrimination. However, this woman worked for Harrah's for 21 years. Then Harrah's changed the standards. She obviously knew her job and was an employee in good standing.

Whatever is going on, I don't like it. I bear no resemblance to this woman, but I don't wear make up anymore, and would resent the hell out of a new edict from my employer ordering me to paint myself up.

138 posted on 12/29/2004 4:16:15 PM PST by TheSpottedOwl ("In the Kingdom of the Deluded, the Most Outrageous Liar is King".)
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To: Oreo Kookey

Relax. We need a little distraction.


139 posted on 12/29/2004 4:16:59 PM PST by cyborg (http://mentalmumblings.blogspot.com/)
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To: TheSpottedOwl
Then Harrah's changed the standards.

Conditions change. They changed the standards for everyone. There is an old business saying, "Adapt or die." She chose to terminate herself as far as employment is concerned.

140 posted on 12/29/2004 4:18:42 PM PST by af_vet_1981
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To: HuntsvilleTxVeteran

I was before and now I am after.


141 posted on 12/29/2004 4:28:06 PM PST by Hillary's Lovely Legs (I am a STINGY American, just ask my CPA.)
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To: Ellesu
Jespersen has a naturally ruddy, clear complexion and has never liked makeup. When she started at Harrah's, a company consultant recommended she try it. She did for a few weeks, then tossed the cosmetics. But last year, as part of a company-wide makeover of casinos and riverboat gambling halls around the country, Harrah's made it mandatory for women to wear blush, powder, mascara, and lipstick at all times on the job. (Men may not wear makeup.) Both male and female employees also must undergo a makeover and be photographed at their "personal best"; supervisors periodically check to make sure staffers are living up to their photographs.

The article has a more flattering pic of her than the previously posted ones. She looks like she'd be more at home on the range, than the cosmetics aisle at Rite-Aid :-( Ruddy complexion. I can just see this woman gamely applying BLUSH. Lipstick is trial and error, but if they could have let her slide with a natural tinted lip gloss, maybe we wouldn't be here discussing it. Btw, powder after a certain age is a disaster. It lands in lines you never knew you had. This is the first "manly woman" that I have ever defended.

142 posted on 12/29/2004 4:40:21 PM PST by TheSpottedOwl ("In the Kingdom of the Deluded, the Most Outrageous Liar is King".)
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To: af_vet_1981

There are also "grandfather clauses". I wonder if they have ordered older men to start using Grecian Formula, or lose their jobs?

Don't mean to be crabby, but I've always held on to the belief that your commitment to hard work, dedication, and loyalty should supercede the "eye candy" factor. My bad....


143 posted on 12/29/2004 4:44:20 PM PST by TheSpottedOwl ("In the Kingdom of the Deluded, the Most Outrageous Liar is King".)
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To: nhoward14

Haven't got enough liver for that.


144 posted on 12/29/2004 4:51:31 PM PST by ItsForTheChildren
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To: TheSpottedOwl
I wonder if they have ordered older men to start using Grecian Formula, or lose their jobs?

I read nothing about coloring your hair, only that the employees had to be well groomed with basic standards that are normal for most people. She sounds like someone who wanted to cause an accident. She succeeded. I hope she pays every penny in court costs.

145 posted on 12/29/2004 4:53:37 PM PST by af_vet_1981
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To: af_vet_1981

Personal best would cover coloring your gray hair. I don't think she was one to cause a fuss, because they employed her for 21 years. If you were in a situation where your employer decided to mandate changes that you weren't comfortable with (I have no examples to cite-just use your imagination), wouldn't you kick up a fuss? Me? I'm an asshole and I'd show up looking like Zsa Zsa Gabor. Hey, they told me to wear makeup.

Seriously, the fair thing would be to "grandfather" the established employees who give good service, while holding the new hires to the new standards. 21 yrs=4 yrs until retirement? Hmmmm....


146 posted on 12/29/2004 5:14:24 PM PST by TheSpottedOwl ("In the Kingdom of the Deluded, the Most Outrageous Liar is King".)
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To: Hillary's Lovely Legs

LOL
I could be the after before I was the before.


147 posted on 12/29/2004 5:25:03 PM PST by HuntsvilleTxVeteran ("SAK")
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To: TheSpottedOwl
You are the most reasonable person on this thread... 21-YEARS

...sure...she's not photogenic...but have any of you guys taken a look at your waistlines, receding hairlines,(and where the hair went) your ears lately?

The woman does not look like a heterosexual dream date. She's been a good employee for, again, 21 years...

148 posted on 12/29/2004 5:38:29 PM PST by paulat
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To: TheSpottedOwl

No, personal best does not mean coloring your hair. She was a trouble maker, as evidenced by her lawsuit and refusing to take the job. She thought she was going to hold up Harrah's. I hope it costs her big time as an example to others. Everyone should brush their teeth before they show up at work.


149 posted on 12/29/2004 5:42:05 PM PST by af_vet_1981
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To: paulat
Here she is ...
150 posted on 12/29/2004 5:45:39 PM PST by af_vet_1981
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