It appears that allegations of workplace discrimination apply to more than private employers. According to a federal commission, New York City engaged in discrimination regarding wages paid to women and minorities. The payments they received reportedly were substantially less than white male workers received.
These findings came from the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Complaints originally brought against the former administration of Mayor Michael Bloomberg involve over 1,000 administrative managers working for the city.
This appears to have been a systematic problem. The EEOC blames “structural and historic problems” resulting in lower pay for women and minorities. Failure by the city to enter conciliation talks prior to April 17 means the matter will move to the Justice Department. Estimates of back wages owed and other damages total $246 million. The EEOC also calls for the city to implement procedures to prevent discrimination from occurring in the future.
While the union argues that discrimination goes back four decades, the findings of the EEOC only concern the past six years. The current administration released a statement indicating that this “process is just beginning.” They expect the holding of an arbitration hearing later in the year where there will be available more information about salaries paid.
Work is a vital part of our lives. Unfairness at the workplace results in consequences for both individual employees and all workers at a particular location. Keeping silent about improper behavior only encourages more wrongdoing. Employees facing workplace discrimination may benefit from receiving legal advice from attorneys experienced in trying employment law cases.
Source: The New York Times, “New York City Discriminated in Paying Managers, Commission Finds,” Marc Santora, April 6, 2015