DENVER — Coca-Cola Refreshments USA Inc. has reached a $2.25 million settlement with the federal government to resolve nine charges of discrimination, alleging the company did not provide accommodations for employees with disabilities.
According to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agreement includes Coca-Cola Refreshments USA, updating its polices regarding accommodations for employees who are returning to work after a disability absence.
"This is a strong agreement that will improve policies and practices for individuals with disabilities and sets an example for many employers to follow," EEOC acting chair Victoria Lipnic said in a statement. "I commend Coca-Cola Refreshments USA and the EEOC staff in our Denver and Phoenix offices for bringing this matter to a successful resolution. I especially commend Coca-Cola Refreshments for agreeing to make the terms of this agreement public."
"One of our guiding principles as an organization is to treat everyone with respect and fairness and create an inclusive work environment that values the contributions of everyone," said Coca-Cola Refreshments USA senior vice president of human resources Brian Sasadu. "We are pleased that we have been able to work collaboratively with the EEOC to strengthen our disability leave policies to reflect best practices from inside and outside our business system."
In addition Coca-Cola Refreshments USA will establish a "leave management team" to help employees, the EEOC said.