Bank of America must pay $2.2 million to more than a thousand black job applicants turned down for jobs in Charlotte after a federal judge ruled that the bank racially discriminated against them, the U.S. Department of Labor announced Monday.
The Charlotte bank had allegedly turned down qualified black candidates for teller jobs, and entry-level clerical and administrative positions in 1993 and between 2002 and 2005. A judge ruled Bank of America used unfair and inconsistent selection criteria in turning them down.
The labor department filed its first complaint against the bank in 1997. The department said Bank of America had challenged its authority to pursue the case.
"Wherever doors of opportunity are unfairly closed to workers, we will be there to open them no matter how long it takes," said the labor departments Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs Director Patricia A. Shiu, in a statement.
Labor department representatives could not be reached Monday. Bank of America did not immediately respond to requests for comment.