Pepsi to Pay $3.13 Million for Race Discriminition in Hiring

By KBJR News 1

Pepsi to Pay $3.13 Million for Race Discriminition in Hiring

January 11, 2012 Updated Jan 11, 2012 at 12:53 PM CDT

Minneapolis (Northland's NewsCenter) --- Pepsi Beverages has agreed to pay $3.13 million and make changes to their hiring policies and provide training to resolve a charge of race discrimination filed at the Minneapolis Area Office of the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

Most of the $3.13 million will go to victims of Pepsi's former hiring policy. Part of the money will go to the administration of the claims process.

Based on an investigation conducted by the EEOC, Pepsi's former criminal background check policy discriminated against African Americans and was in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

The EEOC's investigation revealed that more than 300 African Americans were negatively affected by Pepsi's criminal background check.

Under the company's former hiring policy, if a job applicant had an arrest on their record, that applicant was not hired for a permanent job even if they had never been convicted of any offense. This policy also denied employment to applicants who had been arrested or convicted of specific minor offenses.

This policy of denying employment based on arrest and conviction records can be illegal under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 if the criminal records have no relevance to the job. This kind of hiring policy can limit the employment opportunities for workers based on their race or ethnicity.

During the EEOC's investigation, Pepsi adopted a new criminal background check policy. The company is now offering employment opportunities to victims of the former criminal background check policy who still wish to seek employment with Pepsi and are qualified for the jobs they plan to apply for.

Pepsi will also provide Title VII training for its hiring personnel and all of its managers.

Pepsi will continue to send reports to the EEOC on its new hiring practices under their new criminal background checks.

Posted to the web by Krista Burns