EEOC files lawsuit on behalf of transgender employee

A federal lawsuit alleges a Minnesota company subjected a transgender employee to sex discrimination.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed the suit Friday against Shoreview-based Deluxe Financial Services Corp.

According to the EEOC, after longtime employee Britney Austin began to present as a woman in the company's Phoenix office and informed her supervisors that she was transgender, the company refused to let her use the women's restroom.

The suit accuses Austin's supervisors and co-workers of causing a hostile work environment, including using hurtful epithets and intentionally using the wrong gender pronouns.

The EEOC accuses the company of violating the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

In a statement Saturday, the company wrote that the EEOC claims lack merit and the company takes the dignity of its employees seriously.

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