It was a little disturbing and confusing to us that the EEOC jumped the gun in announcing a settlement in the Hawaiian farm labor case and was dealt a blow by the Court, which denied the EEOC’s consent decrees — at least for now.
Charles A. Krugel, a Chicago employment attorney who established and runs a great LinkedIn group, “Charles Krugel’s Labor & Employment Law & Human Resources Practices Group,” noted on LinkedIn after the EEOC released the news that it had settled the matter:
“I appreciate what the EEOC did in this case & support them. However, I question whether the $2.4 million, which will be distributed among the employers & their staffing company (& maybe their insurance companies) really sends a message to “white slavers” & sweatshop owners.
It appears that this case is the 1st lawsuit filed & settled by the EEOC on a large class scale, regarding “vulnerable” workers, but is it an early step to something larger or just a nuisance settlement by the employers?”
After we posted our Alert! that the Court had denied the EEOC’s consent decrees in this matter, and asked “Why did the EEOC prematurely announce the settlement? We tried to access the link to the EEOC’s earlier press release about the purported settlement but it was apparently taken down,” Charles wrote:
“Unfortunately, the EEOC has a history of issuing press releases with false & misleading information. This is just another in a long history. Sadly, this time they jeopardize the settlement of a troubling case of “white slavery” & sweatshop like workplace & further damage their credibility (emphasis added).”