Apple has agreed to settle a $25 million claim brought forth by the Biden administration, accusing the company of illegally favoring immigrant workers over American citizens and green card holders for certain jobs.
The Department of Justice (DOJ) argued that the tech giant violated federal law by refusing to recruit U.S. citizens or permanent residents for jobs that were eligible for the Permanent Labor Certification (PERM) program, which allows employers to sponsor immigrant workers for green cards, thereby providing them with permanent work in the U.S., the Post Millennial reported.
The DOJ added that Apple also failed to advertise job openings on its website that were eligible under the PERM program while forcing applicants to mail paper applications — an excruciatingly long process — instead of electronic applications, which the tech giant usually allows.
In a statement, the DOJ said that the settlement is one of the largest in history and is centered around the department’s claims of discrimination based on citizenship. Apple will now be forced to fork over $6.75 million in civil penalties and an additional $18.25 million to an unknown number of affected workers, per the Post Millennial.
Justice Department Secures $25 Million Landmark Agreement with Apple to Resolve Employment Discrimination Allegations Based on Citizenship Status
— DOJ Civil Rights Division (@CivilRights) November 9, 2023
Apple said its actions were “unintentional.”
“Apple proudly employs more than 90,000 people in the United States and continues to invest nationwide, creating millions of jobs,” the company told the Associated Press (AP) in a statement. “When we realized we had unintentionally not been following the DOJ standard, we agreed to a settlement addressing their concerns.”
“We have implemented a robust remediation plan to comply with the requirements of various government agencies as we continue to hire American workers and grow in the US.” The tech giant added.
Adding insult to injury, the DOJ will also force Apple to “conduct more expansive recruitment for all PERM positions” by posting positions on its job website and allowing applicants to submit their resumes digitally.
Alongside Apple, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk must also address a hiring discrimination lawsuit by the DOJ, alleging that his company refused to hire asylum seekers and refugees. Unlike Apple. SpaceX managed to block the lawsuit by arguing that the judges overseeing the case were “unconstitutionally appointed.”