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Health care services and products company Cardinal Health Inc. will pay $1.45 million to resolve racial harassment and retaliation charges filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the agency said Friday.
The EEOC said African American employees at the company were subjected to “ongoing and unwelcome” harassment.
The agency said the workers were either directly employed by Dublin, Ohio-based Cardinal or assigned to work there by staffing agency Glendale, California-based Howroyd-Wright Employment Agency Inc., which does business as AppleOne.
In addition to agreeing to pay $1.45 million to resolve the litigation, Cardinal Health and AppleOne agreed to separate two-year consent decrees that included retaining an equal employment opportunity monitor and conducting audits, among other provisions.
Both also agreed to maintain a toll-free complaint hotline and provide all employees with discrimination training.
“The EEOC has seen an increase in race harassment allegations across industries and localities,” Anna Park, regional attorney for EEOC’s Los Angeles district office, said in the EEOC statement.
“It is very important for employers and staffing agencies to be proactive in addressing these issues. Cardinal Health and AppleOne are commended for establishing changes within their workplaces that will have a positive impact on their employees and the communities they reside in.”
Cardinal and AppleOne did not respond to requests for comment.
Last month, Congress revoked a controversial rule, introduced during the closing days of the Trump Administration, that determines how the EEOC settles employment discrimination cases.
A federal appeals court has overturned a lower court ruling and held a former car dealership network worker’s hostile work environment and sexual harassment claims should be arbitrated, not litigated.