Archive for the ‘Affirmative Action News’ Category

Dodge’s Chicken To Pay $190,000 To Former Employee Fired After Suffering From Seizures

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Press Release 11-28-11

Company Violated ADAAA Disability Law, EEOC Charged
HOT SPRINGS, Ark. – D&H Company, Dodge Brothers, Inc., and Giant Oil Company of Arkansas, Inc., doing business as Savings Station Dodge Stores and Dodge’s Chicken Store, will pay $190,000 to settle a disability lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today.
In its lawsuit, the EEOC charged that the companies denied the store leader of their Dodge’s Chicken Store 631 in Hot Springs, Ark., a reasonable accommodation after she suffered from seizures. Because her doctor restricted her from driving, she requested that the employer allow another employee to conduct daily competitor gasoline price surveys while she handled that employee’s in-store duties. The defendants denied her request for an accommodation and discharged her.
Denial of a reasonable accommodation to disabled individuals violates Title I of the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) as amended by the Americans With Disabilities Amendments Act of 2008 (ADAAA). The EEOC filed suit on Sept. 28, 2010, No. 6:10-cv-06072, in U.S. District Court for the Western District of Arkansas, Hot Springs Division after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process. This case was among the agency’s first lawsuits filed under the ADAAA.
EEOC General Counsel P. David Lopez noted that President Barack Obama recognized October 2011 as National Disability Employment Awareness Month.
“The Commission has devoted considerable attention to ensuring compliance with the ADA through the issuance of policy and public attention,” said Lopez. “As reflected by this case, however, the EEOC, when necessary, is prepared to litigate to ensure that persons with disabilities have fair opportunity for economic independence. Indeed, last fiscal year, the EEOC filed approximately 60 disability discrimination cases.”
Faye A. Williams, regional attorney for the EEOC’s Memphis District Office, which has jurisdiction over Arkansas, added, “Reasonable accommodations allow many individuals with disabilities to work. Employers should understand their obligation to provide an employee with a reasonable accommodation unless it poses an undue hardship. The EEOC remains committed to its responsibility in enforcing the ADA.”
In addition to monetary relief, the terms of the 30-month consent decree require that the defendants create a disability policy in its employee handbook for distribution to all its employees; provide for training under the ADA; maintain records of any disability complaints; provide reports to the EEOC; and post a notice to employees about the lawsuit that includes the EEOC’s contact information.
Defendants own and operate convenience stores and gas retailers in 10 states including Arkansas and Mississippi and collectively employ more than 700 people.
The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the EEOC is available on its web site at www.eeoc.gov.

http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/11-28-11.cfm

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EEOC Intake, Relief Obtained and Charges Resolved Hit Record Highs in 2011

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Press Release 11-15-11

Fiscal Year 2011 Shows First Reduction in Pending Inventory Since 2002

WASHINGTON—The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) finished fiscal year 2011 with a ten percent decrease in its pending charge inventory—the first such reduction since 2002, achieved the highest ever monetary amounts through administrative enforcement, and received a record number of charges of discrimination, the agency reported in its annual Performance and Accountability Report (PAR) filed today.
The EEOC received a record 99,947 charges of discrimination in fiscal year 2011, which ended Sept. 30, the highest number of charges in the agency’s 46-year history. EEOC staff also delivered historic relief through administrative enforcement—more than $364.6 million in monetary benefits for victims of workplace discrimination. This is also the highest level obtained in the Commission’s history. The fiscal year ended with 78,136 pending charges—a decrease of 8,202 charges, or ten percent. In previous years, the pending inventory had increased as staffing declined 30 percent between fiscal years 2000 and 2008.
“I am proud of the work of our employees and believe this demonstrates what can be achieved when we are given resources to enforce the nation’s laws prohibiting employment discrimination,” said EEOC Chair Jacqueline A. Berrien. “The EEOC was able to strategically manage existing resources and take full advantage of increased resources in the past two fiscal years to make significant progress towards effective enforcement of the nation’s civil rights laws.”
Due to EEOC’s enforcement programs in both the private and federal sectors, 5.4 million individuals benefitted from changes in employment policies or practices in their workplace during the past fiscal year. Additionally, EEOC’s public outreach and education programs reached approximately 540,000 persons directly.
The agency continued to build a strong national systemic enforcement program. At the end of the fiscal year, there were 580 systemic investigations involving more than 2,000 charges under way. EEOC field legal units filed 261 lawsuits—23 of which involved systemic allegations affecting large numbers of people; 61 had multiple victims (less than 20); and 177 were individual lawsuits.
The EEOC’s private sector national mediation program also achieved historic highs, obtaining more than $170 million in monetary benefits for complainants, and securing the highest number of resolutions in the history of the program—9,831. This is five percent more than the number of resolutions reported in fiscal year 2010.
In the federal sector, where the EEOC has different enforcement obligations, the Commission resolved a total of 7,672 requests for hearings, securing more than $58 million in relief for parties who requested hearings. It also resolved 4,510 appeals from final agency determinations.
The EEOC’s FY 2011 PAR is posted on the agency’s web site at http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/plan/index.cfm. Comprehensive enforcement and litigation statistics for fiscal year 2011 will be available in early 2012.
The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the Commission is available on its web site www.eeoc.gov.

http://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/newsroom/release/11-15-11a.cfm

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Census 2010: Sixth Informal Update on Status of ACS 2006-2010 Special EEO File

In the third Census 2010 update we received, [Joseph Donovan] stated that the American Community Survey (ACS) 2006-2010 Special EEO File would not contain a “disability” measure due to technical reasons, i.e., a “break-in-series” problem. However, one of the federal agencies sponsoring the creation of the upcoming Special EEO File has indicated to Census that it would like to have a Special File or Tabulation created that would include a “disability” measure. My current understanding is that it will not be part of the official ACS 2006-2010 Special EEO File but it will be released at the same time, i.e., December 31, 2012.

The files included in this informal update are for providing you with the essentially final version of both the new county/county set definitions and the new Census/SOC crosswalk. Although these two tables are nearly set in stone, they are subject to being revised up until the Special File is finally and formally released.

PDFs available for download:

Excel files available upon request from staff@biddle.com

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"Hire a Veteran" – President Obama signs the Veterans Opportunity to Work to Hire Heroes Act of 2011

Federal contractors who had undergone recent audits can attest to the fact that the OFCCP is stepping up their expectations and efforts with regards to outreach programs geared towards recruitment (and hiring) of more veterans. The OFCCP has gone beyond just asking for proof of job postings, but has also asked for proof of the contractor’s active relationship with their local veteran’s office and their utilization of the Department of Labor’s veteran outreach tools (e.g., asking for the local veteran’s office’s contact information, when was the local office last contacted, etc.). This is also coupled with the expected Spring 2012 release of the revised regulations regarding the implementation of section 4212 of the VEVRAA (Vietnam Era Veterans’ readjustment Assistance Act of 1974).

The current administration’s focus on assisting the veterans to be part of the productive workforce has once again became apparent when President Barack Obama signed the “VOW [Veterans Opportunity to Work] to Hire Heroes Act” into law on Monday, November 21, 2011. This is another stepping stone for the Obama Administration in their high pursuit of making sure that our service members will have jobs available when they come home.

Read full article: Veterans Opportunity to Work to Hire Heroes Act of 2011

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Wealth Gaps Rise to Record Highs Between Whites, Blacks, Hispanics

Pew Social and Demographic Trends
Released: July 26, 2011
Twenty-to-One
By Paul Taylor, Richard Fry and Rakesh Kochhar

Executive Summary

The median wealth of white households is 20 times that of black households and 18 times that of Hispanic households, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of newly available government data from 2009.
These lopsided wealth ratios are the largest since the government began publishing such data a quarter century ago and roughly twice the size of the ratios that had prevailed between these three groups for the two decades prior to the Great Recession that ended in 2009.

Full Story: http://www.pewsocialtrends.org/2011/07/26/wealth-gaps-rise-to-record-highs-between-whites-blacks-hispanics/

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‘Sweden made me re-think affirmative action’

The Local (Sweden)
Published: 23 Nov 11 11:20 CET

Although Sweden’s emphasis on gender can at times seem a bit much to a foreigner, the battle to change perceptions of how a gender equal society can look, has made it a model to follow, Ruben Brunsveld observes.
Ban mums’ bare boobs: young Swedes (26 Oct 11)
Half of young Swedish mums want to be housewives: study (25 Oct 11)
Swedish men soon in the majority (25 Sep 11)Reacting to my latest contribution on The Local, some readers questioned if I wanted to live in Sweden or whether it would not be better to move (back) to another country. One commentator even “marvel(ed) at Mr. Brunsveld’s almost neverending knitpicking of Sweden’s endless flow of ‘faults and inadequacies’’. So let me begin with stating the obvious: Sweden is a marvelous country in which to live! So many important core values are anchored in society in a way that few other countries have managed. Transparency, equality, the rule of law, and many other human rights values are not only incorporated in the constitution but also woven deeply into the fabric of society. And yes, sometimes I wonder if it doesn’t go too far.

Full Story: http://www.thelocal.se/37516/20111123/#

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What Should Obama Do on Affirmative Action?

The Chronicle of Higher Education
November 21, 2011, 5:53 pm
By Richard Kahlenberg

President Obama, facing high unemployment and a sluggish economy, may soon encounter a new obstacle in his quest for re-election: the re-emergence of affirmative action in higher education as a political issue. The odds seem increasingly likely that the U.S. Supreme Court will take up a suit against the University of Texas at Austin, re-introducing the issue of racial preferences that has been largely dormant since the 2003 Supreme Court Grutter decision affirming the use of race in admissions.
The tricky politics of affirmative action for Obama is an important feature of two new books, Still a House Divided: Race and Politics in Obama’s America by Desmond S. King of Oxford and Rogers M. Smith of the University of Pennsylvania (a volume I reviewed this week in The New Republic); and The Persistence of the Color Line: Racial Politics and the Obama Presidency, a trenchant analysis by Harvard Law School professor Randall Kennedy.

Full Story: http://chronicle.com/blogs/innovations/what-should-obama-do-on-affirmative-action/30905

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Pro vs Con: Affirmative Action

(Loop 21 picture)

Loop21
By Kenrya Rankin8:37 AM
Nov 21st, 2011
Two powerful arguments for an issue dividing the nation

Affirmative action has long been a contentious question in this country. But no matter how it’s framed, most Americans believe the country still has work to do when it comes to social and economic equality. According to a USA Today/Gallup Poll, when asked “How much of a role, if any, do you think the government should have in trying to improve the social and economic position of blacks and other minority groups in this country: a major role, a minor role, or no role at all?” 91% of African Americans think the government should play some role. A full 69% of whites agree. A recent spate of cases that challenge affirmative action in higher education has pushed the issue into the spotlight, so we turned to Black experts on both sides of the conversation to tackle the key question: Is affirmative action still necessary in our current higher education climate?

Full Story: http://www.loop21.com/content/pro-vs-con-affirmative-action-0

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Nishimoto Trading Co. will pay $400,000 to 71 women to settle US Labor Department sex discrimination allegations

US Department of Labor
Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs
News Release
OFCCP News Release: [11/17/2011]

Nishimoto Trading Co. will pay $400,000 to 71 women to settle US Labor Department sex discrimination allegations

Women denied employment at Santa Fe Springs, Calif., branch to receive back pay and job offers
LOS ANGELES — The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs has reached an agreement with federal contractor Nishimoto Trading Co. to settle findings of hiring discrimination. In a conciliation agreement with the department, Nishimoto will pay $400,000 in back wages and interest to 71 women who were rejected for sales associate positions at the company’s facility in Santa Fe Springs, Calif.
“Those who do business with our government are expected to follow our laws,” said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. “I am pleased the Department of Labor was able to work out a fair settlement with Nishimoto that will guarantee women the right to compete fairly for good jobs.”
Based on a compliance evaluation of the company’s Santa Fe Springs facility conducted by OFCCP’s Los Angeles District Office, investigators determined that Nishimoto failed to ensure qualified job applicants received equal consideration for employment without regard to gender as required by Executive Order 11246. Under the terms of the settlement agreement, Nishimoto will extend job offers to 14 women in the original class as sales associate positions become open. The company also has agreed to improve training for personnel involved in the selection process. In addition, Nishimoto must undertake extensive self-monitoring measures to ensure that all hiring practices fully comply with the law and immediately correct any discriminatory practices.
Tokyo, Japan-based Nishimoto operates U.S. branch offices in Atlanta, Ga.; Chicago, Ill.; Dallas, Texas; Denver, Colo.; Honolulu, Hawaii; Las Vegas, Nev.; Miramar, Fla.; Phoenix, Ariz.; San Diego and San Francisco, Calif.; Seattle, Wash.; Carlstadt, N.J.; and Elkridge, Md. The company holds federal contracts totaling $1.2 million with the U.S. Department of Defense to sell Asian foods at commissaries.
In addition to Executive Order 11246, OFCCP enforces Section 503 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974. As amended, these three laws require those who do business with the federal government, both contractors and subcontractors, to follow the fair and reasonable standard that they not discriminate in employment on the basis of sex, race, color, religion, national origin, disability or status as a protected veteran. For general information, call OFCCP’s toll-free helpline at 800-397-6251 or visit its website at http://www.dol.gov/ofccp/.
Read this news release in Japanese.

http://www.dol.gov/opa/media/press/ofccp/OFCCP20111642.htm

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Dodge’s Chicken To Pay $190,000 To Former Employee Fired After Suffering From Seizures

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity CommissionPress Release 11-28-11Company Violated ADAAA Disability Law, EEOC ChargedHOT SPRINGS, Ark. – D&H Company, Dodge Brothers, Inc., and Giant Oil Company of Arkansas, Inc., doing business as Savings Station Dodge Stores and Dodge’s Chicken Store, will pay $190,000 to settle a disability lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission […]

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EEOC Intake, Relief Obtained and Charges Resolved Hit Record Highs in 2011

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity CommissionPress Release 11-15-11Fiscal Year 2011 Shows First Reduction in Pending Inventory Since 2002WASHINGTON—The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) finished fiscal year 2011 with a ten percent decrease in its pending charge inventory—the first such reduction since 2002, achieved the highest ever monetary amounts through administrative enforcement, and received a record […]

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Census 2010: Sixth Informal Update on Status of ACS 2006-2010 Special EEO File

In the third Census 2010 update we received, [Joseph Donovan] stated that the American Community Survey (ACS) 2006-2010 Special EEO File would not contain a “disability” measure due to technical reasons, i.e., a “break-in-series” problem. However, one of the federal agencies sponsoring the creation of the upcoming Special EEO File has indicated to Census that […]

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"Hire a Veteran" – President Obama signs the Veterans Opportunity to Work to Hire Heroes Act of 2011

Federal contractors who had undergone recent audits can attest to the fact that the OFCCP is stepping up their expectations and efforts with regards to outreach programs geared towards recruitment (and hiring) of more veterans. The OFCCP has gone beyond just asking for proof of job postings, but has also asked for proof of the […]

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Wealth Gaps Rise to Record Highs Between Whites, Blacks, Hispanics

Pew Social and Demographic TrendsReleased: July 26, 2011Twenty-to-OneBy Paul Taylor, Richard Fry and Rakesh KochharExecutive SummaryThe median wealth of white households is 20 times that of black households and 18 times that of Hispanic households, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of newly available government data from 2009.These lopsided wealth ratios are the largest […]

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‘Sweden made me re-think affirmative action’

The Local (Sweden)Published: 23 Nov 11 11:20 CETAlthough Sweden’s emphasis on gender can at times seem a bit much to a foreigner, the battle to change perceptions of how a gender equal society can look, has made it a model to follow, Ruben Brunsveld observes.Ban mums’ bare boobs: young Swedes (26 Oct 11)Half of young […]

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What Should Obama Do on Affirmative Action?

The Chronicle of Higher EducationNovember 21, 2011, 5:53 pmBy Richard KahlenbergPresident Obama, facing high unemployment and a sluggish economy, may soon encounter a new obstacle in his quest for re-election: the re-emergence of affirmative action in higher education as a political issue. The odds seem increasingly likely that the U.S. Supreme Court will take up […]

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Pro vs Con: Affirmative Action

(Loop 21 picture)Loop21By Kenrya Rankin8:37 AMNov 21st, 2011Two powerful arguments for an issue dividing the nationAffirmative action has long been a contentious question in this country. But no matter how it’s framed, most Americans believe the country still has work to do when it comes to social and economic equality. According to a USA Today/Gallup […]

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Nishimoto Trading Co. will pay $400,000 to 71 women to settle US Labor Department sex discrimination allegations

US Department of LaborOffice of Federal Contract Compliance ProgramsNews ReleaseOFCCP News Release: [11/17/2011]Nishimoto Trading Co. will pay $400,000 to 71 women to settle US Labor Department sex discrimination allegationsWomen denied employment at Santa Fe Springs, Calif., branch to receive back pay and job offersLOS ANGELES — The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract […]

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