The U.S. Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs has recently announced that federal contractor Caviness Beef Packers Ltd. – also known as Palo Duro Meat Processing Inc. and Caviness Packing Co. – has agreed to a massive settlement after an investigation reveled that that the company discriminated against job applicants because of their race and gender. In total, 746 applicants were wrongfully denied positions at the company’s two meat processing facilities in Amarillo and Hereford, Texas.
“The law is clear,” said OFCCP Director Patricia A. Shiu. “Discrimination will not be tolerated by employers who profit from lucrative government contracts. We are committed to protecting workers from discrimination, including the hundreds of qualified white, black, Asian and female job seekers involved in this case.”
While conducting scheduled compliance reviews of both meat processing plants, OFCCP uncovered the discriminatory hiring practices and found Caviness Beef Packers to have violated Executive Order 11246, “by failing to meet its obligations as a federal contractor to ensure that qualified job applicants receive equal consideration for employment without regard to their sex, race, color, religion or national origin.”
As per terms of the parties agreement, Canivess will pay $600,000 to the 746 candidates who were denied employment, including back wages and interest. Additionally, at least 81 offers of employment will be extended to the applicants. The company has also agreed to carefully reexamine their screening and selection process to avoid future hiring violations.