Bank of America agrees to pay $4.2m for allegedly discriminating against minority job applicants

Mohammed Awal October 05, 2019
The Bank of America Center is seen on March 29, 2019 in Orlando, Florida. On April 2, 2019, Bank of America announced plans to make $5 billion in mortgages available to low and moderate income borrowers through a five-year program called Neighborhood Solutions. (Photo by Paul Hennessy/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Bank of America has agreed to pay $4.2 million in back wages and interest for hiring discriminations against minority job applicants.

According to reports, the Charlotte-based bank agreed to the settlement after the U.S. Department of Labor found alleged discrimination in hiring officials against minority groups.

Reports say a compliance review by the Labor Department’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs alleged the Bank discriminated against black, Latino and female applicants.

The applicants, The Charlotte Observer reports were seeking among other jobs phone representatives, mortgage underwriter, and sales specialist.

The discriminatory practices were said to have occurred at the Bank’s location in New Jersey, Florida, Georgia, and Texas. 

The settlement agreement is understood to be the largest in the compliance program’s history. “This result will further the goal of equal employment opportunity,” Craig E. Leen, the Director of the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) said in a statement last month.

On its part, Bank of America remarked that it agreed to the settlement with the hope of finally putting the discrimination claims, which it repudiates strongly to rest.

“We are confident that our hiring practices were appropriate and reflected Bank of America’s demonstrated a record of recruiting a diverse workforce,” the Bank’s spokesman Bill Halldin told Atlanta Black Star in a statement.

He added: “These reviews occurred between six and 10 years ago in a small number of offices. We decided it was best to put this matter behind us by reaching this resolution.”

This is not the first time the Bank of America has had to fight the allegations of discrimination in its hiring policy.

The Bank in 2017 coughed up $1 million in back pay and interest to more than 1,000 African-American job applicants to settle a nearly 24-year-old discrimination case involving its predecessor, NationsBank.

That settlement was after a 1993 DOL review, in which the department said it found evidence of “systemic hiring violations” involving 1,027 Black applicants.

Acting OFCCP director Thoms Dodd said at the time: “Although much time and effort has gone into this case by all parties, the department is pleased that the matter has been resolved.

“It’s a win for the affected job applicants, for Bank of America and for the department. It reinforces our nation’s founding principles of fair treatment and level playing fields.”

Last Edited by:Mildred Europa Taylor Updated: October 5, 2019


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