A new report released by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) highlights a disturbing trend among New York City administrators, which found that over 1,000 female or minority city managers were paid "substantially less" compared to white male managers with similar positions and job titles.
The investigation was conducted by the federal commission after a complaint was levied against the previous mayoral administration of Michael Bloomberg, though the actions recommended by the EEOC will have to be undertaken by new mayor Bill de Blasio. According to the commission, the city has engaged in "structural and historic problems" that facilitated significant pay discrimination toward female and minority managers. As The New York Times reports, the EEOC has recommended that the city begin conciliation efforts to compensate the managers for hundreds of millions of dollars in back wages and other damages.
Although union officials with the Local 1180 of the Communications Workers of America have long held that this form of discrimination has existed for nearly 40 years, the EEOC's report only pertains to pay discrimination throughout the past six years. Nevertheless, union president Arthur Cheliotes praised the commission's finding as a positive step forward.
"The findings are a federal indictment of the systemic inequality of the city's personnel practices that this administration has inherited, and that our mayor has repeatedly stated he wishes to correct in our city," Cheliotes said in an official statement. "I am hopeful that this administration will take up the EEOC's offer and engage in the conciliation process the EEOC has proposed to correct this institutional discrimination and finally end in equality in the ranks of the city's work force."
If conciliation talks do not begin by April 17, the case will taken up by the Justice Department, which could ultimately result in a lawsuit against the city.