Minority-Owned IT Company Settles With DOJ Over ‘Whites Only’ Job Listing

Arthur Grand Technologies Inc., a minority-owned tech firm based in Virginia, has reached a settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) following the fallout from a discriminatory job posting that specified “whites only.” 

The company has been fined $7,500 by the DOJ’s Civil Rights Division and Labor Department and will also pay a total of $31,000 to 31 individuals who filed complaints regarding the offensive ad.

The problematic job listing, which appeared in March 2023, was for a Salesforce business analyst and insurance claims position based in Dallas, Texas. The ad stipulated that only “US Born Citizens [white] who are local within 60 miles from Dallas, TX” were eligible to apply, further instructing that this information should not be shared with candidates. The role was to serve clients HTC Global, an IT company in Michigan, and Berkshire Hathaway, a multinational conglomerate headquartered in Nebraska.

The discriminatory nature of the job posting quickly sparked outrage on social media, leading to a federal investigation. The Department of Justice determined that the posting violated the Immigration and Nationality Act, which prohibits federal contractors from discriminating based on race, national origin, and other protected characteristics.

Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the DOJ’s Civil Rights Division condemned the job posting, stating, “It is shameful that in the 21st century, we continue to see employers using ‘whites only’ and ‘only US born’ job postings to lock out otherwise eligible job candidates of color.” 

In addition to the discriminatory language, the Labor Department discovered that Arthur Grand Technologies failed to maintain records tracking the demographic characteristics of job applicants, including gender, race, or ethnicity. The company also neglected to post notices of workers’ equal employment opportunity rights in public places, further violating federal guidelines.

In a statement, Arthur Grand Technologies’ CEO, Sheik Rahmathullah, denied “any guilt or wrongdoing” and attributed the incident to a rogue employee. “We took immediate and decisive action to ensure that this type of incident will never happen again, including the immediate termination of the responsible employee,” Rahmathullah stated. “We sincerely apologize for any harm caused by this incident and are committed to making meaningful changes to maintain the trust and confidence of our community and stakeholders.”

As part of the settlement with the Labor Department, the company must send a letter to those who complained, offering them participation in the settlement agreement. The letter requires complainants to acknowledge that Arthur Grand Technologies denies any unlawful or unfair treatment. By signing and receiving the settlement payment, complainants agree not to pursue further legal action against the company.

Additionally, Arthur Grand Technologies will be closely monitored to ensure compliance with anti-discrimination laws. The company is also required to revise its employment policies and provide training to employees on the Immigration and Nationality Act’s requirements.

Arthur Grand is listed as a certified Small Disadvantaged Business on the federal contractor’s roster. In order to qualify for this status, the majority ownership of the company must be held by “one or more disadvantaged persons,” who must also be considered “socially and economically disadvantaged.”

“We are proud that all senior leadership positions in our company are held by people of color, and over 80% of our staff are also individuals of color,” Rahmathullah stated in an interview with NPR.

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