Andrea Dearden Mar. 13, 2013, 4:07pm

A Madison County Hospice provider is being sued by a former employee who claims the company paid her less because she was a woman and then fired her for complaining about it.
Kathy Blume filed the sex discrimination lawsuit against Passages Hospice LLC on Feb. 28 in Madison County Circuit Court.

Blume worked for Passages Hospice as an Admissions Coordinator from Feb. 22, 2011 until Feb. 21, 2012 when she was fired from her job, according to the complaint. Blume says she filed a charge of discrimination with the Illinois Department of Human Rights which was dismissed by the agency.

Blume contends she was paid less than "substantially younger, substantially less educated and substantially less experienced men." She says she confronted the Passages Marketing Director with the allegations of unequal pay who allegedly told her women are paid less than similarly situated males "throughout the company." Blume says she also spoke about the disparity in pay with District Manager Chris Rayborn and supervisor Jeremiah Campbell during the week of Feb. 13, 2012.

The former Passages Hospice employee alleges the company paid more in compensation and bonuses to men who were less educated and less experienced than it paid to her. She accuses Passages Hospice of violating the Illinois Human Rights Act by allegedly discriminating against her on the basis of gender.

Blume says the company's actions caused her to miss out on compensation she would have received if she were not discriminated against. She says the situation has also caused her to "emotional distress, embarrassment and humiliation."
The former employee also accuses Passages Hospice of retaliation. She says the company terminated her employment in retaliation for allegations made about discrimination. Blume is asking to be awarded more than $100,000. She also requests reinstatement with the company, back pay with interest, court costs and attorney fees.

Attorney Lee W. Barron of Alton is representing Blume. They demand a jury trial.

Madison County Circuit Court Case No. 13-L-339 

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