July 21, 2000

San Diego Company Will Pay 11 Women for Pay Discrimination

The U.S. Department of Labor announced today that Gen Probe Incorporated of San Diego will pay $11,632 in back wages, including interest, to 11 women as part of a settlement resolving claims that it's pay policies discriminated against women.

Gen Probe Inc. adjusted the annual salary by an average of approximately $4,000 for each of the 11 women. The women, who are currently employed by the company, work in a variety of occupations, including sales analysts, scientists and various administrative and management positions.

In addition to resolving the pay disparity, the company also agreed to conduct meetings, with its executive, management, and supervisory personnel to explain the intent of its EEO policy and their responsibility for its implementation. The company will also evaluate its compensation policy at least annually.

Gen Probe, Inc., a federal contractor that develops, manufacturers, and sells genetic tools for diagnosing human diseases, is headquartered in Japan. The company employs 350 workers at its San Diego facility, located at 10210 Genetic Center Drive.

"Women deserve equal pay for equal work," said Woody Gilliland, acting regional director for the Labor Department's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs, which identified the pay disparity while reviewing the contractor's employment practices. "When women are not paid equally, it hurts not only the women, but their spouses and families. It affects not only the paycheck, but often retirement and other benefits as well.

The discrimination was uncovered during a compliance review examining the contractors personnel records for a two-year period beginning in January 1998. The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs enforces laws that prohibit employment discrimination by federal contractors. It monitors federal contractors to ensure that they provide equal employment opportunity without regard to race, gender, color, religion, national origin, disability or veteran status and comply with affirmative action requirements.

OFCCP conducts compliance review, complaint investigations, and monitors federal contractors. OFCCP laws cover approximately 26 million workers or nearly 22 percent of the total civilian workforce. Since 1994, OFCCP has recovered more than $150 million in financial settlements for victims of discrimination.

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