Department of Labor sues Oracle over discriminatory pay and hiring practices

The U.S. Department of Labor has sued Oracle for discriminatory employment practices, the government body announced on Wednesday. The Department of Labor specifically states that the company has “a systemic practice” in place of paying white male workers more than others in the same role, including “women, African American and Asian employees.”

The suit also alleges that Oracle favours Asian workers in its recruitment efforts for technical and product roles, which resulted in discrimination in its hiring practices against non-Asian job seekers applying for those roles. The suit is being brought by the U.S. Department of Labor because it is a federal contractor, providing services, software and hardware to the U.S. government. Federal contractors are required to maintain equitable and fair hiring practices. The full complaint from the Department of Labor is embedded below.

For its part, Oracle denies the claims. The company provided the following statement to TechCrunch via a spokesperson:

The complaint is politically motivated, based on false allegations, and wholly without merit. Oracle values diversity and inclusion, and is a responsible equal opportunity and affirmative action employer. Our hiring and pay decisions are non-discriminatory and made based on legitimate business factors including experience and merit.

Oracle’s claim that the suit is “politically motivated” might be an oblique reference to the appointment of its co-CEO Safra Catz to Donald Trump’s presidential transition team, which was announced in December.

Should Oracle be found to have committed wrongdoing in this case, it could face the cancellation of all current government contracts, as well as a ban on receiving future contracts from the federal government.

U.S. Department of Labor complaint v. Oracle, January 18, 2017. by TechCrunch on Scribd