Comcast Corp. agreed to pay $295,000 to 45 Black and Hispanic workers at its Philadelphia headquarters and raised some salaries to settle allegations of pay discrimination from the U.S. Department of Labor.
The department’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) said it accused Comcast of discriminating against Black workers in engineering and program project management, as well as Hispanic employees in marketing and strategic planning. The agency said it found average pay disparities for the various positions ranging from $2,337 to $4,850 for those workers as of July 1, 2018, according to the agreement between the government and the cable giant.
Comcast will also make $78,670 in salary adjustments, monitor compensation for workers in those areas, and conduct training for staffers involved in determining base salaries.
Comcast denies the allegations but said it decided to resolve the matter to avoid litigation.
The Labor Department said it found the pay disparities during a routine compliance audit to see whether workers face barriers to advancing into mid-level and senior corporate management. The agency enforces federal laws that make it illegal for contractors doing business with the federal government to discriminate in employment.
Comcast, with 190,000 employees worldwide and 9,000 at its Philadelphia campus, has contracts with several federal agencies, including the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Department of Veterans Affairs, and Corporation for National and Community Service, the Labor Department said in a news release late Wednesday.
“Federal contractors must ensure their pay practices do not discriminate for any reason,” Michele Hodge, regional director for the OFCCP in Philadelphia, said in a statement. “OFCCP remains committed to holding companies with federal contracts accountable in ensuring equal employment opportunities and practices.”
A Comcast spokesperson said the company monitors pay practices periodically and adjusts pay to promote equity.
“The OFCCP’s statistical analysis found pay differences for a very small number of employees in one location within our company,” spokesperson John Demming said in a statement. “While we believe these pay differences were proper based on factors not considered by the OFCCP’s statistical model, we decided to resolve the matter rather than engage in protracted litigation.”