US Tech Company Fined $7,500 for Posting Discriminatory ‘Whites Only’ Job Ad

A Virginia-based tech company, Arthur Grand Technologies Inc., has been fined $7,500 by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) for posting a job advertisement that sought only white, U.S.-born candidates. This incident, which occurred in March 2023, led to widespread criticism and legal repercussions for the company.

The job ad in question specified that it was looking for “only US-born citizens [white] who are local within 60 miles from Dallas, TX.” This discriminatory requirement quickly garnered negative attention on social media, prompting an investigation by the DOJ and the Department of Labor’s Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP).

The DOJ’s Civil Rights Division, led by Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke, determined that the advertisement violated the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). This act prohibits employment discrimination based on citizenship status and national origin. Additionally, the OFCCP found that the job posting breached Executive Order 11246, which prohibits federal contractors from making employment decisions based on race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin.

Arthur Grand Technologies initially attributed the discriminatory language to a rogue junior recruiter from its Indian subsidiary. The company issued an apology on LinkedIn, stating, “At Arthur Grand, we do not condone or engage in any type of discrimination based on race, color, or religion.” They further explained, “We conducted an investigation and discovered that a new junior recruiter at our firm was responsible for the offending job posting. We have taken immediate action and terminated their employment for violating our policy.”

As part of the settlement with the DOJ, Arthur Grand Technologies will pay a civil penalty of $7,500 to the U.S. Treasury and implement comprehensive training for its staff on compliance with the INA. The settlement also mandates the revision of the company’s employment policies, which will be subject to ongoing monitoring.

Furthermore, the agreement with the Labor Department requires Arthur Grand to compensate individuals who filed complaints with the OFCCP. Acting Director Michele Hodge of the OFCCP emphasized the importance of holding federal contractors accountable for discriminatory practices, stating, “We are committed to holding federal contractors accountable for outrageous discriminatory practices like this advertisement.”

This incident highlights the persistent issue of racial bias in job hiring practices within the U.S. A recent study reported by Business Insider found that resumes with Black-sounding names are less likely to receive callbacks. Additionally, AI tools, initially seen as a means to reduce bias in hiring processes, have also shown tendencies to echo human racial biases. For instance, a recent experiment revealed that OpenAI’s ChatGPT over-selected Asian women candidates while under-selecting Black men. OpenAI has suggested that recruiters can mitigate such biases by stripping names from the screening process.

Arthur Grand Technologies did not immediately respond to requests for comment from Business Insider regarding the settlement and the measures they plan to implement to prevent future occurrences of such discriminatory practices.

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