Gender bias suit filed against Quest Diagnostics

By the Associated Press | January 12, 2012 | 12:40 PM EST

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Female sales representatives for Quest Diagnostics are accusing the diagnostic testing company of gender discrimination in a $100 million federal lawsuit.

The lawsuit was filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in Newark, N.J., by two employees of the company's AmeriPath division. They are also seeking to have the court extend the lawsuit to other female sales reps who have been employed by Madison, N.J.-based Quest Diagnostics Inc. since Feb. 17, 2010.

Sales managers Erin Beery in Indianapolis and Heather Traeger in Bradenton, Fla., allege a wide range of discriminatory practices by the Fortune 500 company.

They claim high-ranking company officials foster an "old boys' club" environment that forces women to work under less favorable circumstances then men and denies them equal advancement opportunities.

Officials at Quest had no immediate comment.