The discrimination lawsuit was filed by four black women who claimed the company gave preferential treatment to Latinos.
Howard Industries will pay $1.3 million into a settlement fund to be paid to possibly as many as 5,000 non-Hispanic individuals who applied for jobs at the company between March 2003 and Aug. 28, 2008.
Also, within nine months after the settlement, the company will hire at least 70 of the individuals who had applied for jobs, according to court documents. Howard Industries, according to court records, entered the settlement without admitting any wrongdoing.
The lawsuit claimed that one of the plaintiffs applied for a job at the Howard Industries electrical transformer plant in Laurel, Miss., every three to six months beginning in 2002, but wasn’t offered a position until after the 2008 raid. Immigration agents detained nearly 600 illegal immigrants during the raid at the sprawling plant. Most of them were deported, though a handful faced identity theft charges. The company was fined $2.5 million in February 2011 after pleading guilty to conspiracy to violate immigration laws.
The lawsuit claimed Howard Industries not only knew it was hiring illegal immigrants, but instructed some on how to get false identities and concealed the fact that hundreds of employees were illegal immigrants. Federal authorities made similar allegations against the company.