These days, bias is coming with a pretty hefty price tag for Bank of America. Just weeks after reaching a $160 million settlement with black Merrill Lynch brokers, about 4,800 females are eligible for a $39 million settlement.
Current and former female financial advisers and trainees at Bank of America and Merrill, which the bank bought in January 2009, got a big win late last week. The court ruled that the pervasive culture of favoring men and providing perks, violated U.S. civil rights law.
The class action lawsuit, filed in March 2010 accused the bank of favoring male financial officers “with respect to business opportunities, compensation, professional support, and other terms and conditions of employment.”
The lawyers for the plaintiffs argued that women were excluded from being assigned lucrative and career-making clients. What's worse, is when the women complained, they faced more discrimination and retaliation.
Wrong move. And while Merrill Lynch admits no wrongdoing, the company will bring in an “applied organizational psychologist” to study the gendered reverberations of its policies. " Damage control or being forced into common sense?
Photo: Flickr via Creative Commons/Rainforest Network