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Woman claims Rooms-to-Go forced her out

Published Jan. 26, 1994|Updated Oct. 6, 2005

A Tampa mother has sued Rooms-to-Go Inc., charging that her former employer forced her out of a job after she became pregnant.

In a lawsuit filed in Hillsborough Circuit Court, Carolyn Smithers alleges that after 5{ months as an outside marketing director, she was demoted to salesperson in the company's Largo store in November 1991. The move came after Smithers, 33, told bosses her doctor recommended that she limit her standing because of her high-risk pregnancy.

According to the lawsuit, Smithers was told to come back to work after the birth of her child, when she was "lean and svelte." Smithers also charges that Rooms-to-Go retaliated against her for opposing aspects of the company's construction of a new headquarters in Seffner.

Smithers, who left the company in January 1992, seeks an injunction against the company's hiring and promotion policies, lost wages and unspecified damages.

Rooms-to-Go president Jeffrey Seaman called it "a ridiculous, baseless lawsuit . . . We have very progressive policies on matters like that."

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