Federal Agency Charged Drugstore Chain's Personality Tests Had Negative Impact on Jobseekers Based on Race and National Origin
CLEVELAND - CVS Caremark Corporation, a nationwide retail pharmacy and health care company based in Woonsocket, R.I., has reached a conciliation agreement with U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) to resolve charges of race and national origin discrimination raised by a former EEOC Commissioner under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the federal agency announced today.
Following a lengthy investigation, the EEOC found it probable that between 2002 and 2010, the company, through use of personality tests/assessments during the application process, adversely impacted applicants based on race and national origin.
CVS stopped using the problematic assessments after receiving the discrimination charge to demonstrate its support of Title VII and without admitting liability. Because of the EEOC's investigation and subsequent conciliation agreement, CVS agreed to implement many "best practices" nationally, such as modifying its hiring process, employing staff to recruit and monitor the hiring of minorities and developing a comprehensive training curriculum for managers focused on diversity, inclusion and the prevention of barriers to equal employment. CVS will conduct regular evaluations of its hiring practices and will provide regular reports to the EEOC for several years.
"CVS has shown model cooperativeness in this conciliation process," said Jamie Williamson, director of the EEOC's Philadelphia District, of which Cleveland is a part. "It's a great sign when such a major employer of national scope works with the EEOC to straighten out a situation that was discriminatory, even if it was never intended to be."
EEOC Cleveland Field Office Director Cheryl Mabry added, "The EEOC is enthused that CVS had made sure that these questionable 'tests' will no longer prove a barrier to the advancement of any demographic group."