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Labor Department sues Oracle, says it discriminated against women, blacks, Asians and non-Asians

Oracle has denied the Labor Department's allegations.
Oracle has denied the Labor Department’s allegations.
(Paul Sakuma / Associated Press)

Technology company Oracle Corp. has discriminated against women, African Americans, Asians and non-Asians in its employment practices, the U.S. Department of Labor said Wednesday after filing a lawsuit.

“The leading technology company has a systemic practice of paying Caucasian male workers more than their counterparts in the same job title, which led to pay discrimination against female, African American and Asian employees,” the department said in a statement.

The department also alleged in the lawsuit filed Tuesday that the Redwood City, Calif., company systematically favored Asians in its recruiting and hiring for product development and other technical jobs, “which resulted in hiring discrimination against non-Asian applicants.”

Oracle denied the allegations.

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“The complaint is politically motivated, based on false allegations and wholly without merit,” Oracle spokeswoman Deborah Hellinger said.

The suit further alleged that Oracle stonewalled Labor Department investigators by refusing to comply with routine requests for employment data and records.

“Oracle refused to provide prior-year compensation data for all employees, complete hiring data for certain business lines, and employee complaints of discrimination,” the department said.

The department said it tried for nearly a year to “resolve Oracle’s alleged discrimination violations” before filing the lawsuit.

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As a company that has received hundreds of millions of dollars in federal government contracts, Oracle is barred from employment discrimination based on race, color, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or national origin, and must take “affirmative action” to guarantee equal opportunity to job applicants and workers, the department said.

The lawsuit asks the court to force Oracle to permanently abandon the alleged discriminatory practices. It also seeks compensation for those affected, for lost benefits such as wages and promotions.

Baron writes for the Mercury News/McClatchy.

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