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Pepsi Will Pay Over $3M in EEOC Hiring Discrimination Case

January 25, 2012

According to a recent U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) press release that Howard Law attorney Vincent Howard has been following, Pepsi Beverages has decided to former job applicants $3.13 million, and will provide job possibilities and employee training to resolve a charge of discrimination based on race.

During the EEOC race discrimination investigation, the commission reportedly found that Pepsi had a policy in place that used a criminal background check for job applicants--and violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by discriminating against African Americans.

The EEOC discovered that Pepsi's former policy reportedly adversely affected over 300 African Americans, by excluding the black job applicants from permanent employment after applying a criminal background check to each applicant. Under Pepsi's former hiring policy, any job applicants who had been previously arrested and were pending prosecution or who were convicted of certain minor offenses were not hired for permanent positions.

Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, using records of arrest and conviction for the basis of hiring or denying within an employment setting can be against the law when it is not pertinent for the job, because it can reduce the opportunities for workers or job applicants based on ethnicity or race.

During the investigation, Pepsi reportedly developed a new policy for criminal background checks. Pepsi will provide $3.13 million in financial relief, to be divided primarily among African American applicants for job positions at Pepsi, with some of the relief to be used for the administration of the claims process. Pepsi will also offer employment opportunities to qualified race discrimination victims who suffered under Pepsi's former background check policy, who are still interested in being employed by the company.

The EEOC enforces federal laws that prohibit employment discrimination. According to the EEOC, the commission has guidance and policy statements that have long been in effect surrounding the usage of conviction and arrest records in employment--with the first issued guidance over this topic released in the 1980's.

In addition to the monetary relief, Pepsi will report to the EEOC about its continuing hiring practices, under the new policy, and will provide new training for all managers within the company, along with new personnel.

If you have experienced race-based discrimination in Costa Mesa, California, contact managing attorney Vincent Howard at Howard Law, PC today, so our labor and employment legal team can help find a solution for your recovery.

Pepsi to Pay $3.13 Million and Made Major Policy Changes to Resolve EEOC Finding of Nationwide Hiring Discrimination Against African Americans, The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, January 11, 2012

Related Web Resources:

Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH): The Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA)

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, EEOC: Laws Enforced by EEOC

Facts About Race/Color Discrimination, EEOC

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