LITIGATION: Closing a Color Gap

Closing a Color Gap

The battle began as a simple lawsuit filed by one black employee who had been passed over for a promotion at General Motors. But by the time GM agreed to a settlement last week, the complaint had grown into a class-action suit representing some 10,000 workers, mostly clerical and managerial, who will reap millions of dollars in pay adjustments. The accusation: that GM's system for judging worker performance discriminated against blacks. "Evaluators were allowed to indulge their biases, conscious or unconscious," said Dennis James, lawyer for the plaintiffs.

While admitting no guilt, GM has agreed to pay more than $3 million...

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