August 1, 2012

MONSANTO SETTLES WITH OFCCP ON CHARGES OF SEX DISCRIMINATION

by Art Gutman Ph.D., Professor, Florida Institute of Technology

The consent decree, was approved on 7/26/12 by an administrative law judge (see Monsanto consent decree). A compliance review by the OFCCP in February 2006 revealed that Monsanto hired 26 applicants for Operator-Mechanic-Engineer (O-M-E) positions, and that that all 26 were male. The settlement is for 54 females who applied for these positions during that time. Based on a “labor market analysis”, the OFCCP alleges that “inconsistencies in the selection process along with anecdotal evidence supported” a finding of adverse impact against females. The OFCCP also alleged that “inconsistencies in the selection process along with anecdotal evidence” supported its adverse impact charge.

Monsanto claimed it engaged in no illegal activities, but agreed to the settlement to avoid protracted litigation. There were no monetary settlements, but Monsanto agreed to a number of conditions, including:

(1) Selection of at least of six-class member for its one-year apprentice program to provide classroom instruction and hands-on training done in conjunction with Idaho State University.

(2) Offer of full time O-M-E positions to women successfully completing training.

(3) Pursue “additional good faith efforts to increase the number of successful female applicants for O-M-E positions.

(4) Provide “good faith enhancements”, including sponsoring welding scholarships, internships, and “industrial hiring preparation workshops for women at Idaho State University.

(5) Expand advertising for women and conduct outreach efforts at career fairs and conferences for women.

(6) Submit semiannual progress reports to the OFCCP for 24 months containing information on women who apply for and accept offers of admission to the training programs.

(7) Document women who express interest in the program who either are not admitted or refuse offers.

No money — but all that will be expensive.

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