Texaco Inc. will pay $3.1 million to
186 female employees who the U.S. Labor Department said were
paid less than men doing similar work for the oil giant, Texaco
and government officials said Wednesday.
Labor Secretary Alexis Herman was set formally to announce
the payment later Wednesday, a department spokesman said.
The agreement affects less than 2 percent of Texaco's female
workforce in the United States, but is the largest under a Labor
Department affirmative action compliance program.
The discrepancy in salaries paid to a variety of Texaco
workers ranging from secretaries to mid-level managers was
discovered by regulators in 1996 when they performed a routine
review of Texaco's compliance with federal labor laws.
The agreement between Texaco and the Labor Department is
known as a "conciliation agreement" rather than a settlement
because no female employees ever filed a lawsuit in the matter.
White Plains, New York-based Texaco employed a total of
about 9,000 women in its U.S. offices in 1996, a company
"The salary discrepancies were identified during a routine
compliance review by the Office of Federal Contract Compliance
Programs," a Texaco spokesman said.
The relatively obscure office is part of the Labor
Department and monitors companies that do business with the
federal government to make sure they comply with all labor laws.
Much larger agreements have been reached in actions
involving the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and in
Of the $3.1 million, about $900,000 already has been paid in
salary adjustments to the women and the rest of the money has
been earmarked for back pay.
The women affected by the agreement worked in Texaco offices
throughout the country and were not concentrated in any
Texaco said the agreement was completely separate from
racial discrimination allegations lodged against the company two
years ago. The oil company settled that lawsuit for $176
Last year, Texaco launched a salary equity review program
to "make sure that salaries for all employees across the board
are equitable," the company spokesman said.