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age, disability, and sexual orientation will be put at a competitive disadvan-
tage. Businesses that discriminate lose when compared with those that eval-
uate workers primarily on their job qualifications and abilities.
Employers that refuse to hire workers because of irrelevant discrimina-
tory characteristics such as race and gender will eventually create a substan-
dard workforce. Depending upon the industry, this can result in otherwise
qualified workers being forced into the ranks of the unemployed. Employers
would also face the additional cost of having to recruit, employ, and retrain
new workers as a result of laying off previously qualified employees.
According to a study by Burns (2012) , the cost of replacing dismissed
workers falls within the range $5,000 to $10,000 for hourly workers. The
cost increases to between $75,000 and $211,000 for executive-level
employees earning $100,000 or more annually. Discrimination in the
workplace can lead to even more costly expenses in the form of legal
claims and potential lawsuits. It was found in the Biliski v. Kappos
Supreme Court case of 2010 that, during the current recession, the top
ten private-plaintiff discrimination lawsuits cost companies more than
$346 million. In January 2010, the Outback restaurant chain was forced
to pay out $19 million in a sex discrimination case. In this case, a female
employee filed a successful legal claim when she was denied opportunity
for advancement, promotion, and favorable work assignments. Major
companies, including Fox News, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Bank
of America, and Merrill Lynch, have all been sued for sexual discrimina-
tion during this recent economic recession.
Barbee (2010) reported that, in Texas, workers were awarded $28.9 mil-
lion in compensation for workplace discrimination that included sexual
harassment, religious intolerance, and discrimination on grounds of age,
ethnicity, and race. This came to $2.7 million more than the previous year.
In Texas, sexual discrimination was found to be the most common reason
for complaints, followed by race, age, and disability grievances, according to
the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) (2010) .The
number of complaints dipped minimally in 2009 from the previous year.
Overall, for the fiscal year that ended in 2010, 9,310 Texas workers alleged
discrimination based on their gender, disability, national origin, race, reli-
gion, or other reason, according to EEOC statistics.
During the recent economic downturn businesses have competed
even more aggressively for the most qualified and skilled labor to improve
their competiveness. In order to increase competiveness, employers have
had the opportunity to selectively hire workers from the largest and most
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