NEW YORK (Legal Newsline) – The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced that Local 25 of the Sheet Metal Workers’ International Association and its associated apprenticeship school agreed to pay $1.65 million combined due to allegations of race discrimination.

This settlement is part of a decades-old lawsuit against the organization, which is the trade union responsible for sheet metal journeypersons in northern New Jersey. The union allegedly discriminated against black and Hispanic journeypersons over a multi-year period. This particular agreement covers from April 1991 through December 2002.

"EEOC is committed to ensuring equal opportunities throughout the construction trade," EEOC New York District Office district director Kevin Berry said. "Through remedial agreements like the one in this case, we can rid this industry of such invidious race discrimination."

The $1.65 million will go toward journeypersons harmed by the alleged discrimination. Local 25 also agreed to an injunction that will bar discrimination based on race or national origin.

“EEOC will continue to bring strong enforcement actions until black and Hispanic sheet metal workers no longer face discrimination on the jobsite,” EEOC's New York acting regional attorney Raechel Adams said. “Today's settlement is an important step in realizing justice for these workers."

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