Oracle America is being sued by the U.S Labor Department claiming that the company has systematically paid its white, male employees more than other workers while also unlawfully favouring Asian applicants during recruiting.
The U.S department filed the complaint with an administrative judge in Washington, in which it alleged that Oracle America was prohibited from engaging in racial discrimination due to the large sums of money it receives as a contractor of the federal government.
Oracle is said to have hundreds of millions worth of contracts with various US federal departments.
The complaint says that Oracle had been far more likely to hire Asian applicants for roles such as product development and technical roles rather than black, white, or Hispanic applicants.
Further allegations point to Oracle America paying its white male employees at its Redwood Shores HQ, in California, more than female and non-white workers – even those with the same jobs titles and when experience and seniority was taken into account.
Debra Hellinger, an Oracle spokeswoman said: “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.”
The suit potentially puts at risk the large federal contracts that Oracle has won over the years due to the government prohibiting any of its contractors from engaging in employment discrimination.
The Department of Labor wrote: “Oracle has received hundreds of millions in federal government contracts. As a federal contractor, Oracle America is prohibited from engaging in employment discrimination on the basis of race, color, sex, sexual orientation or gender identity or national origin and is required to take affirmative action to ensure that equal employment opportunity is provided to applicants and employees in all aspects of employment.
“If Oracle fails to provide relief as ordered in the lawsuit, OFCCP requests that all its government contracts be canceled and that it be debarred from entering into future federal contracts.”
The suit comes a day after the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs launched a suit against JP Morgan Chase & Co for alleged discriminatory pay practices against female employees.