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Wal-Mart class-action ruling will set precedent for discrimination cases

The Los Angeles Times (1/3) editorializes in favor of a Supreme Court ruling granting class-action status to nearly 500,000 female Wal-Mart employees in a discrimination suit. The Times argues, "class-action suits are often the only way to achieve justice for workers who can't - and shouldn't have to - proceed with anti-discrimination claims individually." It calls the case, which accuses the retailer of paying women less than men "a bold attempt to persuade a conservative Supreme Court to dramatically narrow the criteria for determining what a class is." The Times praised the ruling of an appeals court, which found class certification "reasonable in this case." The Times concludes a ruling in favor of Wal-Mart would mean courts have adopted "narrow interpretations" of civil rights laws "that close the courthouse door to victims of bias."