Apple Faces Lawsuit By Female Employees Over Alleged Pay Discrimination

Tech giant Apple could be in hot water over claims that the company “systematically” underpaid female employees by using manipulative hiring and job evaluation practices.

Gender Discrimination Lawsuit 

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Two female employees are suing Apple over claims that the tech monolith “systematically” paid female employees less than their male counterparts in the same or similar positions.

Filed in San Francisco

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The class-action lawsuit was filed in San Francisco state court on Thursday on behalf of Justina Jong and Amina Salgado, who have made a number of troubling allegations against their employer.

Representing 12,000 Apple Employees

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Both women hope to instigate a suit that would represent more than 12,000 people who currently or previously worked for the major company, which now stands as the most valuable company in the world with a market cap of $3.285 trillion.

Gender Wage Gap

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They claim that Apple established a wage gap between male and female employees through their hiring practices and performance evaluations.

Hiring Process Involved

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Apple hiring managers did this by asking new employees about their salaries in prior jobs, which was then used to establish their starting salary, which served to “perpetuate historic pay disparities between men and women.”

Outlawed in 2017

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In 2017 the state of California, where Apple headquarters is based, outlawed all employers from asking job applicants and new hires about their payment history. 

Changing Their Tactics

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The Cupertino-based company then skirted this law by asking job candidates about their salary expectations. Both hiring methods lead to female employees continuously earning less than male employees in the same positions.

“A Disparate Impact on Women”

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“Apple’s policy and practice of collecting such information about pay expectations and using that information to set starting salaries has had a disparate impact on women,” said attorney Joe Sellers who is representing Jong and Salgado on the case. 

“Not Justified Under Law”

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“Apple’s failure to pay women and men equal wages for performing substantially similar work is simply not justified under the law,” he continued.

Unfair Evaluation of Performance Metrics

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Both plaintiffs also went on to claim that the company would disproportionately reward male employees based on performance metrics like teamwork and leadership, which led to male employees being favored for promotions and bonuses over their female counterparts.

The Moment of Realization

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Jong specifically claimed that she realized how steep the gender pay gap was in her workplace when she accidentally found a male coworker’s W-2 form.

“He Was Paid $10,000 More Than Me”

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“I noticed that he was being paid almost $10,000 more than me, even though we performed substantially similar work,” Jong said in her own statement. “This revelation made me feel terrible.” 

Third-Party Probe Required

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Salgado had also issued a number of similar complaints directly with the company, but Apple made no moves to raise her salary to match male colleagues until a third-party investigation confirmed the pay gap.

Seeking Compensation and Back Pay

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Both Jong and Salgado are now seeking compensation for unpaid wages, including backpay that Salgado claims she has not been paid.

Back Pay Failure

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“As a result of the third-party investigation, in late 2023, Apple increased Ms. Salgado’s compensation prospectively,” the lawsuit confirmed. “But failed and refused to pay Ms. Salgado back pay for the years during which she was paid less than men performing substantially similar work.”

No Direct Response Yet

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While Apple has not immediately responded to the lawsuit, the company has claimed in the past that it has maintained pay equity in the workplace since 2017. 

Sexual Harassment in the Workplace

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The lawsuit echoes similar lawsuits and claims made both inside Apple and concerning other tech companies. In 2022, numerous female employees claimed they experienced sexual abuse, harassment, and bullying at the hands of male colleagues across seven Apple departments.

A Dismissive Response

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The women claimed that senior management at Apple responded apathetically in the face of these misconduct allegations, with some even experiencing retaliation for speaking out.

Similar Cases in Recent Years

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Similar gender pay discrimination lawsuits have also been levied against other tech companies, including Google and software company Oracle.

Google and Oracle Lawsuits

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In 2022 Google chose to settle a class action gender discrimination lawsuit. In February this year, Oracle also paid $25 million to settle a lawsuit alleging that the company had underpaid 4,000 female employees in California.

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The post Apple Faces Lawsuit By Female Employees Over Alleged Pay Discrimination first appeared on Liberty & Wealth.

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The content of this article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute or replace professional financial advice.

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