According to federal labor officials, the Great Plains Coca-Cola Bottling Company in Oklahoma City has agreed to pay $475,000 in back wages and interest to settle sex discrimination allegations impacting 1,293 female job seekers. The US Department of Labor's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) investigators determined the company unfairly rejected these qualified women for merchandiser, driver, driver trainee, production and warehouse positions at the company's bottling and distribution facility.
The settlement, reached Thursday, reportedly stems from an OFCCP review of the Great Plains Coca-Cola facility's hiring process over a two-year period beginning in June of 2007. OFCCP investigators found female applicants were “much less likely” to be hired than “similarly-situated” male applicants. Investigators believe the company violated labor laws keeping federal contractors from discriminating on the basis of sex when making employment decisions.
OFCCP officials said the company will now make job offers to 116 of the original class members as positions become available.