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Brunswick, Lund settle hiring discrimination case for $295,000


A federal agency says it has reached a $295,000 settlement with Lund Boat Co. and its Lake Forest, Ill.-based parent, Brunswick Corp., in a hiring discrimination case.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs said Tuesday that the $295,000 in back wages and interest will be paid to 185 female job applicants who were rejected for entry-level jobs at Lund’s boat manufacturing plant in New York Mills, Minn.

In a statement, the agency said its investigation began in September 2007 and found that the operation “failed to ensure that qualified female job applicants received equal consideration for employment without regard to their gender.”

The federal agency filed an administrative complaint in November 2011 alleging that Lund officials systematically discriminated against female job applicants in 2006 and 2007.

In addition to the financial settlement, other provisions of the agreement require Brunswick and Lund to extend job offers to at least 27 women in the original class as general laborer positions open, according to the statement.

“I am pleased that we were able to reach a fair settlement in this case, one which will provide immediate relief to the women involved and lasting protections for all job seekers who apply to work for Lund and Brunswick in the future,” Patricia A. Shiu, director of the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs, said in the statement. The agency “is committed to making sure that companies that hold federal contracts — profiting from taxpayer dollars — give workers a fair shot at employment and do not use gender as a factor when it comes to deciding who gets a job and who doesn't.”

In a statement, Brunswick said that it and its boatmaking unit “have cooperated with the agency in order to reach this agreement. In doing so, the companies have admitted to no wrongdoing. Brunswick and Lund Boat are equal opportunity employers and continue to strive for a diverse workforce.”

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