Boeing Racial Quotas = Discrimination

Case 33: Boeing Sources, Background, and Links
Aerospace Giant Aggressively Excludes Non-Minorities

Racial Preferences = Discrimination

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The following excerpts are from published news articles and other public documents and were used in compiling "Case 33: Boeing Reverse Discrimination".  The most recently available links to the original, complete documents are included.
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Case 33
Boeing Press Release 04/15/99

April 15, 1999: (in comments to the Chicago chapter of the Rainbow/PUSH coalition): "[Boeing CEO Phil] Condit announced during the gathering that Boeing had just awarded a total of nearly $500 million in contracts to three minority-owned businesses for the company's defined benefit trusts and a commission recapture program with a fourth firm."

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Boeing Press Release 01/22/99

SEATTLE, Jan. 22, 1999 - "The Boeing Company today announced it plans to settle for $15 million two nationwide class action lawsuits that alleged employment discrimination. The announcement was made by Boeing Chairman and CEO Phil Condit in a joint news conference here with Reverend Jesse Jackson, and Oscar E. Desper III and Bruce A. Harrell, class counsel for the plaintiffs.

          "The company is taking this action to further our goals of encouraging diversity and promoting equal employment opportunity at Boeing," Condit said.

          "We believe the terms of the settlement, along with the valuable help Reverend Jackson has provided, create an opportunity for Boeing to move forward with its vision. We need to be a global company of inclusion, where diverse groups and ideas flourish. We all have to work together to make Boeing more competitive." he stated. 

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Lawyer questions Jesse Jackson's role in Boeing settlement -- 05/24/99

The Topeka Capital-Journal

SEATTLE -- "Boeing Co. chairman Philip M. Condit should be asked whether the company paid the Rev. Jesse Jackson to support a $15 million discrimination settlement, a lawyer says.

          "The issue was raised by Alan B. Epstein of Philadelphia in a brief filed recently in U.S. District Court, part of his bid to overturn the settlement covering about 12,900 past and present black Boeing workers.

          "Epstein wants to ask Condit in court whether Boeing paid Jackson $250,000 for his help in settling the suit and whether Condit steered two multi-million-dollar consulting contracts to black-owned businesses that may have ties to Jackson's Chicago-based Rainbow-PUSH Coalition."

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SEATTLE, Sept. 30, 1999: "Boeing would also pay $15 million dollars to 3,631 workers who filed claim. That's an average of $1, 768 per person, with some getting as much as $50,000, others getting as little as $400.


Naples Daily News -- 11/20/99

Associated Press

SEATTLE, Nov. 20, 1999 - "Less than three months after paying $15 million to settle a bias lawsuit brought by black employees, the Boeing Co. has agreed to pay $4.5 million to end salary discrimination against women and minorities.

          "Under the settlement, Boeing agreed to spend $2.6 million on back pay and $1.9 million in prospective pay adjustments. But the company must spend more if a review of its pay policies deems it necessary.

          "The Labor Department had reported pay discrepancies in reviews of Boeing that are designed to monitor compliance with laws and regulations governing federal contractors.

          "The Labor Department estimates that 3,497 women and 4,631 minority workers at Boeing could be eligible for salary adjustments, and 9,200 women and 8,400 minorities could get back pay out of the initial settlement fund."

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Seattle Times -- 05/24/02

SEATTLE -- "A federal judge in Seattle has issued class-action status to a discrimination lawsuit filed by Asian-American Boeing employees, a ruling that expands the case to include an estimated 2,000 Asian-American engineering workers in Washington.

          "Wednesday's ruling by U.S. District Court Judge Robert Lasnik comes less than three years after Boeing agreed to pay $19.5 million to settle two bias cases involving African-American workers as well as female and minority employees.

          "While Lasnik did not rule on the merits of the Asian Americans' allegations, the attorney for the seven original plaintiffs called it a big setback for Boeing and predicted that the aerospace company would seek a settlement."

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Seattle Times -- 10/01/99

          "Boeing Chairman Phil Condit said a federal judge's approval of a contentious $15 million racial-bias settlement between Boeing and its African-American workers is a positive development for all of the company's employees.

          "The judge approved all monetary and non-monetary terms of the settlement that had been proposed earlier by plaintiff attorneys Oscar Desper and Bruce Harrell and Boeing.

          "More than $3.25 million of the $15 million will be paid to 70 named plaintiffs and 194 other identified class members whose claims surfaced during the litigation. Another $3.4 million will be distributed among roughly 3,400 other workers who had filed claims for monetary rewards.

          "Another $3.65 million will be reserved for the monitoring of the settlement by the attorneys for the African-American workers.

          "Under the settlement, the plaintiff attorneys will receive $3.1 million and an additional $750,000 for monitoring the consent decree for the next three years. Philadelphia attorney Alan Epstein, who filed the other class-action suit and represented the dissenting workers, will receive $200,000.

          "The negotiations involved the Rev. Jesse Jackson, who met several times with Condit to discuss the treatment of minorities at the world's largest aerospace company.

          "In the end, Boeing agreed to settle the high-profile case, but attorneys representing disgruntled plaintiffs attacked the settlement as unfair and arbitrary. As a result, Coughenour postponed his decision for four months to review the complaints."

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Boeing settles two bias suits for $15 million -- 01/22/99

By Stanley Holmes, Seattle Times

          "Boeing today announced a $15 million settlement of two class-action lawsuits that accused it of discriminating and retaliating against African-American employees.

          "The settlement, which followed months of negotiations and the prodding of the Rev. Jesse Jackson, was completed early this morning.

          "Boeing Chairman Phil Condit, Jackson and attorneys representing 43 African-Americans who brought the initial suit appeared at a news conference late this morning at Boeing headquarters.

          "We believe the terms of the settlement, along with the valuable help Rev. Jackson has provided, create an opportunity for Boeing to move forward with its vision," Condit said. "We need to be a global company of inclusion, where diverse groups and ideas flourish. We all have to work together to make Boeing more competitive."

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Lawsuit settled: Condit vows new era of race relations at Boeing -- 01/23/99

By Stanley Holmes, Seattle Times

          "... Among other things, Jackson said he will continue to visit Boeing's plants and factories, and to meet with [Boeing Chairman and CEO Phil] Condit. He plans to visit the company's former Douglas Aircraft operations in Southern California next month.

          "Jackson said he will continue to urge Boeing to name a person of color to its all-white board of directors because a racially diverse board is good business. (Franklin Raines, the board's first black member, was appointed in 1995 and left in 1996 to direct the federal Office of Management and Budget.)

          "Jackson said he would continue to prod Boeing to diversify "its infrastructure, its board, its procurement practices, its pension-fund management and the broad range of opportunities that Boeing has to offer all Americans."

          "... Reverend Jackson has been very forthright in providing his perspectives and his insights," Condit said. "We have come to understand we have many more goals in common than differences. Reverend Jackson has been very instructive to helping us come to this point today."

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Federal judge delays ruling on settlement of Boeing bias suit -- 05/26/99

By Stanley Holmes, Seattle Times

          "Amid fresh rancor from protesting workers, a federal judge this morning delayed for four months a ruling on a controversial $15 million settlement reached between Boeing and lawyers for African-American employees who had charged the company with discrimination.

          "U.S. District Judge John Coughenour said he will decide Sept. 23 whether the bias settlement is fair ... Coughenour said the delay would give the court time to address questions raised today by lawyers for African-American workers upset with the settlement deal. About 75 workers picketed outside the Seattle courthouse to protest the deal.

          "... Under the settlement, the two lawyers would get $3.85 million, including $750,000 for reviewing the claims and monitoring the terms of the settlement for three years.   [Another attorney,] Epstein, who filed a separate class-action discrimination suit last summer on behalf of seven Boeing Helicopter employees in Ridley Township, Pa., would receive $200,000."

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Boeing bias settlement tossed out -- 11/27/02

By David Kravets, The Associated Press, via Seattle Times

SAN FRANCISCO -- "A federal appeals court yesterday nullified the $15 million settlement of a class-action case accusing Boeing of discriminating against about 15,000 African-American employees.

          "The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals objected to the $4 million in attorneys' fees under the 1999 settlement, and the large disparity in payments provided to the employees.

          "The ruling forces Boeing to reopen negotiations that could lead to a more costly settlement or trial.

          "The appeals court sent the case back to federal district court in Seattle. If a new settlement cannot be reached, the case could go back to trial, said lawyers familiar with the case.

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Boeing settles pay-bias probe -- 11/19/99

By James V. Grimaldi, The Seattle Times Washington bureau

WASHINGTON - "To close 10 U.S. Department of Labor workplace audits, Boeing today agreed to a $4.5 million settlement involving up to 6,000 women and minority employees across the nation to make up for pay disparities.

          "Without admitting blame, Boeing also promised to revamp its accounting system at all its facilities in exchange for the Labor Department wiping clean its slate of ongoing audits.

          "Many of the audits, including one stretching back five years, were inherited by Boeing through mergers with McDonnell Douglas and Rockwell's aerospace and defenses businesses.

          "... One of the key changes is in the way Boeing keeps records to meet federal minority-hiring compliance requirements. In the past, Boeing collected information only on applicants who were interviewed. Now it must collect information from anyone who expresses an interest in working at Boeing.

          "The deal calls for Boeing to give the Labor Department its data on compensation to underpaid women and minority employees, rather than have Labor Department auditors go to Boeing plants. But the department reserves the right to conduct on-site audits in the future.

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Boeing notebook: Three new lawsuits allege sex bias -- 01/17/02

Seattle Times

SEATTLE - "Three groups of female Boeing employees yesterday filed federal lawsuits against the aerospace giant alleging gender discrimination, several months after a similar suit in Seattle was granted class-action status.

          "The lawsuits were filed in federal courts in California, Kansas and Missouri by the Seattle law firm Hagens Berman. They also seek to be classified as class actions.

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Other Links and Sources:

Below are abbreviated links to additional documentation used in researching Case 33: Boeing Reverse Discrimination.   --Editor

Boeing bias-settlement pact to be aired today -- 9/23/99

Seattle Post-Intelligencer

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Ninth Circuit Rejects Class Action Settlement; Attorneys' Fee And Named Plaintiff Award Provisions Raise Fairness Concerns -- 12/2/02

From the web site of O'Melveny & Myers LLP (

Original Link:

Text of Decision Original Link:


Ninth Circuit Throws Out Boeing Class Action Settlement as Unfair -- 11/27/02

By Kenneth Ofgang, Staff Writer/Appellate Courts, Metropolitan News-Enterprise

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The Labor Department Speaks Softly but Carries a Big Lawsuit -- Fall 2000

Independent Women's Forum

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Rainbow/PUSH Press Releast 9/11/98

"To discuss the latest developments surrounding the recent class action discrimination lawsuit filed against the giant airline and aerospace manufacturing firm and to discuss the next course of action."

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Jackson's Fundraising Methods Spur Questions -- 03/27/01

By William Claiborne, Washington Post

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When Jackson Presses, Funds Tend to Follow -- 03/13/01

LA Times

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PUSH chief scolds firms, accepts their gifts -- 08/07/99

Chicago Tribune

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Diversity training's new focus changes the way business is done -- June 2000

Detroit News

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*  We use the term reverse discrimination reluctantly and only because it is so widely understood.  In our opinion there really is only one kind of discrimination.