Understanding Corporate Racial Discrimination

An insight into racial discrimination in the workplace and its consequences.

This paper discusses the meaning of corporate racial discrimination, its consequences, the response of the firms that are allegedly practicing it and the methods of fostering corporate diversity. Racial discrimination is referred to any set of actions that discriminate on the basis of race, color, cast or creed. It shows how in the corporate world, racial discrimination can take the form of categorizing employees, customers and suppliers on the basis of their race, cast, color, or creed by treating them in a relatively negative way as compared to other races. It explains racial discrimination through the example of two different companies, Denny’s, a food service chain in the United States ,and Texaco Inc. regarding their treatment of minority workers and the consequences of the allegations of their action.
In 1993, six US Secret Service agents who happened to be African-Americans went to Denny’s for breakfast. After waiting for a considerable period of time and complaining to the manager, when they still did not get served, they filed a class-action race-discrimination lawsuit against Denny’s. Not only did the management at Denny’s had to respond to this lawsuit but they were further forced to deal with the myriad complaints and lawsuits that followed this event. As a consequence of racial discrimination that was being practiced at Denny’s, the firm had to pay $54 million to 294,000 discriminated customers and their lawyers (Abes et.al, 2000). Furthermore, Denny’s was obliged into signing a decree with the US Justice Department where the firm agreed to publicize non-discriminatory policies and retrain existing employees about the same. Moreover the firm’s outlets came under the constant supervision of the Justice Department, for the following seven years, where they would be judged continually for any evidence of racial discrimination.