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Labor: The Peril of Systemic Discrimination Claims

Less than one month after the 9th Circuit approved a 500,000 member class asserting nationwide gender pay disparity and promotion claims against the country's largest retailer, a New York jury awarded more than $250 million to plaintiffs in a massive systemic gender discrimination class action against Novartis. Amy Velez, et al. v. Novartis Pharmaceuticals, Novartis Corporation, and Thomas Ebeling.

In July 2007, a federal judge in New York allowed 19 women to represent a class of all women who worked in sales-related positions at Novartis at any time since July 15, 2002. The gravamen of the plaintiffs' complaint was that "gender discrimination permeate[d] the corporate culture" at Novartis, including discrimination against women in compensation, promotions, personnel evaluations and pregnancy-related matters.

Vincent Cino

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