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Rochester roofer settles race bias claims for $1 million

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Human Resources

Elmer Davis Roofing, the largest roofing contractor in New York state, will pay $1 million to settle an EEOC race bias lawsuit, following what the commission called “decades of ugly and unlawful discrimination against African-American employees.”

According to the suit, black employees at the Rochester company were routinely subjected to racial epithets, systematically channeled into the most difficult jobs and offered little chance at promotions. By contrast, white employees occupied less strenuous positions and found few obstacles to promotion.

The EEOC filed the suit in the Western District of New York federal court in 2007. The five-year consent decree that ended the case calls for Elmer Davis to hire an equal opportunity coordinator to handle discrimination complaints. The company must also train supervisors on how to avoid racial discrimination in the workplace.

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