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California female Walmart employees regroup in bias case

SAN FRANCISCO — Four months after the Supreme Court tossed out a huge class-action lawsuit by female Walmart employees who claimed they were discriminated against by the world’s largest retailer, a smaller, regionalized group of employees has regrouped to file another gender-bias claim against Wal-Mart Stores.

The new, amended lawsuit, filed in San Francisco federal court on Thursday, narrows the class from all of the women who work or have worked at Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club stores, estimated at 1.5 million, to those in the retailer’s California regions, estimated to be at least 45,000 current employees and 45,000 former employees across some 220 California stores. The group alleges that the company pays and promotes them at lower rates than their male counterparts.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs said the lawsuit was the first of many that will be filed against Wal-Mart alleging discrimination against women in pay and advancement.

The June Supreme Court ruling, a 5-4 decision, determined that the plaintiffs had not met class-action requirements.