Lingerie chain Victoria Secret Stores Inc has been hit with a federal lawsuit by the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) after one of its workers allegedly suffered racial and religious harassment.

The EEOC said the suit relates to Lauren Ellerson who worked at a Victoria's Secret store in Oxford Valley, Pennsylvania. She claims she had to put up with a hostile working environment because of her race and religious beliefs.

Ellerson alleges she was asked to keep a close eye on black customers and assume they were shoplifters, told not to hire people of mixed race, and had to regularly work more than one Sunday a month despite being promised she could have the time off.

The suit claims the stresses of Ellerson's work environment forced her to take time off work which caused her to lose her job.

Limited Brands said its policy was not to comment on pending litigation.