In January, the U.S. Department of Labor filed a lawsuit against Oracle, alleging racial discrimination because the company routinely pays white male workers more than other workers with the same job title. Oracle also allegedly favors Asians in certain roles, which results in discrimination against non-Asian workers.
The Department of Labor alleges that during the lawsuit, Oracle refused to comply with routine requests for information. The Department of Labor also alleges that Oracle refused to provide compensation data for all employees, complete hiring data for some business lines, and any employee complaints of discrimination. The Department of Labor finally filed a lawsuit after attempting to obtain information for close to a year. The investigation into Oracle’s business practices began in 2014 when the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs began a review of Oracle’s employment practices.
Although there is not a lot of information on Oracle’s practices in the complaint, it does allege that Oracle discriminated against female employees in information technology, product development, and support jobs at its headquarters. They were allegedly paid less than males in comparable roles. In addition, African-American and Asians in product development were paid less than white employees. For positions in the Professional Technical 1 job group, the company allegedly favored Asians, particularly Indians, resulting in discrimination to white, African-American, and Hispanic workers.
According to the Labor Department, Oracle’s discrimination could result in hundreds of millions of lost dollars in federal contracts, since the federal government uses hardware and software made by Oracle.
Oracle has denied the allegations in the complaint. It alleges that the complaint is politically motivated and without merit. An Oracle spokesperson claims that Oracle values diversity, and that its hiring and pay decisions are based on experience, merit, and other legitimate business factors.
In recent years, Silicon Valley has been under pressure to increase diversity across the tech industry, which has been traditionally dominated by white and Asian men . Many technology companies have begun to promise to hire more minorities and female employees, but changes have been slow.
Because it is a federal contractor, Oracle cannot discriminate based on race, color, sex, religion, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age, and other protected categories. In addition, because it is a federal contractor, Oracle must allow the federal government to review records and information about how the company complies with equal employment laws. In recent years, the federal government has begun enforcing anti-discrimination laws more forcefully with high tech companies.
Employment discrimination based on certain characteristics is illegal. Employment discrimination laws are in place to prevent discrimination based on race, sex, religion, national origin, age, physical disability, and other characteristics. If an employer shows a bias in hiring, promotion, job assignments, termination, compensation, or retaliation, the employer may have violated state or federal employment discrimination laws. In some cases, discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity is illegal.
If you have been the victim of employment discrimination in the Oakland-San Francisco area, you should speak with an attorney. At Liberty Law, Micha Star Liberty believes that employees should be evaluated based on merit. If you have been the victim of illegal discrimination, you can seek backpay and benefits, damages for emotional distress, and more. Call Micha Star Liberty, Oakland employment discrimination attorney, at 510-645-1000. She works with clients throughout the Bay Area, including Hayward, Fairfield, Tracy, San Jose, Sacramento, Berkeley, and the surrounding areas. Call today to learn more or to schedule a free consultation.