(CN) – Oracle pays its white male employees more than their female and minority counterparts, the U.S. Department of Labor claims in a federal lawsuit.
The software giant also has a systemic practice of hiring more Indian workers for product development jobs, according to the department, which believes Oracle has been doing this since at least 2013.
It says it discovered this during its Office of Federal Contract Compliance Program’s routine review of Oracle’s adherence to federal labor laws as a federal contractor.
The office’s review found that female, Asian and black workers were paid less than white men in similar positions.
“Specifically, OFCCP found gross disparities in pay even after controlling for job title, full-time status, exempt status, global career level, job specialty, estimated prior work experience, and company tenure,” according to the lawsuit, which redacts the deviation in pay.
In a statement, acting Office of Federal Contract Compliance Program director Thomas Dowd said, “Federal contractors are required to comply with all applicable antidiscrimination laws. We filed this lawsuit to enforce those requirements.”
The office’s review also found that based on 69 job titles at Oracle’s Redwood Shores, California, headquarters, the company tended to favor Indian applicants over qualified white, black and Hispanic applicants.
The review cited targeted recruitment, referral bonuses, and “over-selection” of Indians from Oracle’s hiring pool.
The lawsuit says the compliance office requested records and data on Oracle’s recruiting, hiring and compensation policies from January 1, 2013 through June 30, 2014, but Oracle refused.
It seeks an order requiring Oracle to comply with federal labor laws or lose its government contracts. It also wants Oracle to compensate those affected by its alleged discriminatory policies.
In an email, Oracle spokeswoman Deborah Hellinger 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 nondiscriminatory and made based on legitimate business factors including experience and merit.”