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Dairy distributor settles workplace discrimination claims

A New York dairy company accused of a variety of employment-related violations has reached a settlement with the federal agency that brought the allegations. Official reports show that Cream-O-Land Dairy was accused of workplace discrimination against minority groups and women. In fact, the dairy, which turned 70 in 2013, openly discriminated against African American, Asian and female applicants for jobs in its warehouse. In all, more than 220 job applicants suffered from the discrimination, according to the complaint.

The terms of the settlement with the U.S. Department of Labor will require the diary distributor to offer 24 jobs to affected class members - minorities and women. Further, $324,000 in back wages, benefits and interest must be paid to several of the rejected applicants.

Authorities say that the discrepancies were noted during a programs review by the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs. The business came under scrutiny because it distributes dairy products to federal agencies including the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Federal Prison System and several military groups. Further, the company sells its products to schools throughout the East Coast. The company also delivers to about 8,000 grocery stores, food markets, educational institutions and food service companies, according to information from its Web site.

In this case, employment discrimination victims will be receiving financial damages even though they never actually worked for the company. Applicants should all be considered based on their skills and work history; not on their gender or the color of their skin. This case is a major victory for minorities and women throughout the New York area, who can rest assured that federal agencies in the area have their best interests in mind.

New Yorkers who think they have been subject to discrimination during the hiring process may be able to collect financial damages for their troubles. A qualified employment attorney can help these victims learn more about their legal rights and options.

Source: Burlington County Times, "Florence dairy business reaches settlement" Chris Bishop, Jan. 02, 2014

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