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Walgreens to settle race lawsuit

America’s largest pharmacy chain, Walgreens, has agreed to pay $20m to settle a federal lawsuit alleging discrimination against black workers.

The Equal Employment Opportunities Commission (EEOC) - a watchdog agency - says Walgreens sent black staff to low-performing stores in black areas.

African-American employees, including pharmacists and managers, were also denied promotions, the EEOC claims.

The settlement deal must still be approved by a federal judge.

“We commend Walgreens for working cooperatively with us to reach an amicable settlement of this case without protracted litigation,” EEOC Chair Naomi Earp said in a statement.

Walgreens, which has denied the allegations throughout, said it was glad to have resolved the issue.

The EEOC launched its case after carrying out an investigation into 12 complaints filed by current and former Walgreens staff across the country.

Most of the complaints in the class action suit came from workers and former staff in St Louis, Florida, Detroit and Kansas City.

Lawyers say the $20m (£9.8m) will be split among lawyers who handled the case and the more than 7,500 employees who brought a class action against the company.

Walgreens says it is the largest US pharmacy chain by sales, with more than 5,638 stores in 48 states and Puerto Rico, and recorded sales of $47.4bn (£24.5bn) in the 2006 financial year.


Posted by SPN on 07/14 at 02:42 PM in Racism / Prejudice

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