African-American strippers awarded more than $3 million in discrimination case

Five African-American dancers will split more than $3 million awarded to them Wednesday for back pay and suffering while working in a Mississippi strip club.

The attorney for Danny’s Downtown Cabaret in Jackson, Bill Walter, said he would ask a federal judge to reduce the award. If the judge doesn’t agree, he said he will appeal.

"Obviously, the client is disappointed in the verdict," Walter said.

African-American dancers at Danny’s Downtown Cabaret, in Jackson, Miss., were found to have worked in worse condition than white strippers. 

African-American dancers at Danny’s Downtown Cabaret, in Jackson, Miss., were found to have worked in worse condition than white strippers.  (Google Maps )

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) sued the club several years ago, alleging that black dancers worked limited hours and were fined $25 if they missed a shift. White strippers were allowed flexible schedules and were not fined for missing work, the commission argued.

The agency also said the manager called one black dancer a racial slur and club owners forced black women to work at another club they owned called Black Diamonds, where conditions and security were worse and dancers were paid less.

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"This case shows the EEOC will sue any employer, operating any type of business, who violates federal anti-discrimination laws, especially those who will not stop discriminating even after being given repeated chances to do so," Rucker said. "The jury ... sent a powerful message to Danny's and any employer who thinks they are above the law."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.