Employment - Chapter 2 - ADR and the Law - 21st Edition
Cathy Cronin-Harris is a senior consultant, CPR Institute for Dispute Resolution, and a law lecturer at Columbia Law School.
David M. White is an adjunct professor at Fordham Law School.
Originally from ADR and the Law - 21st Edition
In recent years, there has been a spate of class-action employment discrimination suits. American institutions such as the Coca-Cola Company, Denny’s, Home Depot, Merrill Lynch and Mitsubishi have joined the pantheon of corporate citizens charged with impermissible discriminatory workplace hiring and promotional practices. Each of these civil law suits resulted in a multi-million dollar monetary settlement. Indeed, the current federal litigation against the nation’s largest employer, Wal-Mart, promises to set the new bar for plaintiff recovery.
Roberts v. Texaco Inc., No. 94 Civ. 2015, S.D.N.Y., filed in 1994, is the progenitor of the modern employment-discrimination class-action settlement. In 1996, a surreptitiously recorded, inaudible sound bite alleged to be a racial slur set in motion a media firestorm, which impugned the character of Texaco Inc., one of the nation’s most respected corporate citizens. The remark prompted the settlement of a civil suit filed against Texaco in 1994. While the magnitude of that settlement was in and of itself remarkable, the most salient aspect of its legacy is the innovative approach it took to settlement administration and oversight: the creation of a body known as the Task Force on Equality and Fairness (hereafter the Task Force).
Chapter 2. Employment
Negotiating Enduring Corporate Change: How the Task Force on Equality and Fairness in Roberts v. Texaco Helped to Facilitate
Cathy Cronin-Harris and David M. White