New DOL claim alleges that Oracle’s use of prior salary contributes to workplace disparities among women and people of color
Oracle America Inc. [Oracle] faces private class claims and a DOL lawsuit which adds new accusations targeting Oracle’s use of prior salary as a practice that contributes to alleged workplace disparities among women and people of color.
Oracle argues that the DOL’s attempt to expand the scope of discrimination claims illustrates that either the original case was “doomed to fail” or that DOL hopes that by publicizing unflattering statements against the company it would exert pressure on them.
On February 5, 2019 Oracle’s legal representation submitted an Opposition to OFCCP’s Motion for Leave to File a Second Amended Complaint to an administrative law judge. They argued that DOL’s recent push to bring new claims was made in “bad faith” and that the government should be barred from amending its complaint alleging pay discrimination. Legal counsel also argued that DOL was working “in coordination with plaintiffs’ counsel prosecuting a civil action against Oracle that those plaintiffs admit piggy-backs on OFCCP’s claim, and with whom OFCCP entered into a secret oral agreement to share information and work together.”
On January 22, 2019 OFCCP sought court approval to file a second amended complaint against Oracle. The agency said that it wanted to allege new claims because Oracle systemically discriminates against women and minorities, resulting in a loss of up to $400 million in wages. The claim narrows the hiring claims to discriminatory college and university hiring practices; the use of prior pay to set salary levels and certain promotion practices.
The law firm alleged that OFCCP was required to undertake a conciliation process before bringing any new claims; however, DOL lawyers argued that the additional claims were refinements of earlier claims.
A separate civil case is also pending in California state court where lawyers are pushing for class certification on behalf of 4,000 women. The women alleged that they make as much as $13,000 less on average than their male counterparts and receive smaller bonus and stock packages.
Prior blogs • November 20, 2017 – Oracle wins motion requiring OFCCP to respond to discovery requests
• February 15, 2017 – Oracle America Inc. is sued by DOL for discrimination employment practices
• January 18, 2017 – OFCCP introducing lawsuits related to pay equity against federal contractors