G&K Services, which operates laundry facilities under federal contract in seven states, has agreed to pay more than $1.8 million and reform its hiring systems after the U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) cited it for systemic discrimination.
OFCCP investigators uncovered a consistent pattern of steering women into lower-paying positions, depriving them of earning opportunities.
Investigators also found that G&K discriminated against men who applied for the jobs it wanted women to fill. Between 2011 and 2015, G&K’s steering practice resulted in a lower hiring rate for 2,327 male applicants who were equally or more qualified for general laborer positions at five locations, including the one in St. Paul, Minnesota.
The company admitted no liability, but agreed to pay $1,813,555 to members of the affected classes.
G&K also agreed to extend 78 job opportunities to the male applicants who were not hired, and 58 higher-paying opportunities into which female employees will be able to move.
The agreement also requires G&K to perform a detailed assessment of its hiring, placement and compensation practices, and its job postings and other documents to ensure they provide equal opportunity and do not discriminate on the basis of sex or race.
G&K must conduct regular adverse impact and compensation analyses at the locations where OFCCP found violations, and will report regularly on its compliance.
Note: Federal contracts bring additional scrutiny. Make sure your employment practices are in order before pursuing one.
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