Oracle Sued Over Discriminatory Practices

A former Oracle sales manager is suing the company, alleging he was fired for complaining about orders to pay an Indian worker less than a U.S. employee in the same position.

Oracle LogoIan Spandow, who was a senior regional manager in database sales, “experienced discriminatory and retaliatory conduct based on his national origin and after his complaint of various improper practices, including the company’s discriminatory pay practices of employees based on their national origin,” according to a civil rights complaint filed Jan. 7 in federal court in San Francisco. Spandow is Irish.

Spandow reportedly was in the U.S. on an L-1 visa, which allows workers at multinational companies to transfer here for a specified period. He sought to bring over a worker from India who had a good track record with the company and to pay him an equivalent of a U.S. salary. However, superiors told him to pay a “substantially lower” sum of $50,000 and chided him for questioning the order.

According to the lawsuit, his sales director said the lower salary offer would be “good money for an Indian.” Later, an Oracle human resources manager allegedly insisted that the lower offer was fair. Weeks later, Spandow was “summarily terminated” without warning on Dec. 5, 2012, the suit claims.

In addition to seeking unspecified compensatory and punitive damages, Spandow is seeking a declaration that Oracle’s conduct was unlawful, and “all injunctive relief necessary to bring [Oracle] into compliance.”

Oracle has not been responding to requests for comment.

Comments

  1. BY Computer Science Grad says:

    Hmmm, the one person who finally stood up and said something is a senior regional manager in database sales in the U.S. on an L-1 visa and not a U. S. born citizen. Interesting, very interesting.

    • BY WhatTheFox says:

      Didn’t think of it like that until I read your comment. Interesting indeed!

    • BY John Doe unemployed americann citizen says:

      while interesting it is also laughable as sad as it is ti say. I worked for that crook ellison and believe me it is worse for american born citizens. I’m trying like heck to get out of this field by going back to school and running quickly. These are not the only problems we citizenry face in this country from scum like elison and gates. way worse. Peel the onion layers back some. You’ll see…;)

      • BY Computer Science Grad says:

        Unfortunately John, there are too many brain dead individuals who follow stupidity blindly until reality kicks their door in. America needs many more civilized individuals to come together as a unified group to improve America. It must begin politically and go out from there to create a better employer and employee relationship. I agree with you. This is sad.

  2. BY Neil Sab says:

    Unfortunately it is a very common practice of discrimination in IT against even the US citizens of Indian Origin all over Corporate United States of America and NO federal action has ever been taken. Oracle can be accused of slavery practice as was in the case of Indian Deputy Consulate in NY was kicked out of the country !! Indian Americans are hard working and deserve to be treated equally by all corporations !!

    • BY WhatTheFox says:

      It only takes a few of one kind to fight back (as in sue them with proper documentation) and their kind will gain respect. Look around … what do you see?

    • BY bluemountain184 says:

      Yes, but I also feel like Indian people get special treatment by the corporations around Silicon Valley.
      I am a young white guy and I do hardware design.
      I have been out of work, but when I go inside major corporations like Intel for interviews, the building is full of Indian people inside.
      How can an ethnic group that hardly had any numbers around Silicon Valley 25 years ago grow so fast if it wasn’t for the Top 1% management having some special preferences on whom they want to hire?
      I call this discrimination, fair and simple, against non-Indians.
      Seriously, in high-tech everyone, including white and east Asians, are all hardworking.

  3. BY Max says:

    How is this discrimination? The company can make an offer, the individual can either take it or leave it. To me it seems the same as you making a different amount than someone else in your position.

    • BY bluemountain184 says:

      A friend of mine who has a source inside Oracle has told me that it is the senior management that want most work to be done by Indians on visas.
      They want Indians because they will work for much less, as long as they are on visas.
      Cisco is also like this according to my friend.
      Of course, $50K is not necessarily poverty level wage, but for high-tech, that’s pretty low since this position doesn’t sound like an entry level position.

      • BY Nightcrawler says:

        Additionally, the law doesn’t care whether the $50k is poverty wage. It cares only if the employee is being paid less simply because they are a member of a protected class. That’s illegal. If that “good money for an Indian” comment was documented, Oracle is in a heap of trouble.

        To visualize the problem, replace “Indian” with “woman,” “black,” “Mexican,” etc.

    • BY Nightcrawler says:

      Because paying one employee less than another who does the same work, based on the employee’s national origin, is illegal, just as it would be illegal to pay them less due to gender, ethnicity, and in some areas sexual orientation. You may not agree with this law, but that’s the way it currently works.

  4. BY WhatTheFox says:

    MAX,

    Tell that to the whiners who are always cribbing about how the “cheap” H1-B workers are “stealing” their jobs by accepting low pay offers.

    But Oracle … really? … Wow! … crappy products, ruthless buy-outs (followed by layoffs obviously) and pay based on origin … gotta hand it to them … they are like no one else.

  5. BY EXPERIENCED DEVELOPER (11) says:

    Oh Max, forgive me if I misunderstood your post, but let me try to describe it another way.

    You live in MAXville where there are a lot of people named MAX and rents are low so you can prosper working for $24,000 US a year. You work for Oracle and they want to bring you to the California because you are talented but rents are high and everyone else doing your job makes $90K US. The person who is making the offer wants to pay you a salary of $90K but that manager is told that $50K is a good salary for pretty much any guy from MAXville or whose name is MAX. Since that $50K is a low salary in California, MAX can decide to join American society, but he will have a longer commute, will not be able to afford a Prius to reduce his gas cost on that long commute, might not be able to afford the same clothing his coworkers wear and the iPhone and social life that go with it. He’ll pay full price for gas. He’ll pay his share of U.S. taxes. His food will cost the same as his coworkers and he’ll get chewed out just like anyone else if he screws up. He’s just paid less because he’s a MAX.

    Reread that and substitute any ethnicity you actually respect (like your own) for MAX and maybe you’ll start to understand. MAX can turn down the $50K “opportunity” and stay where he is or go get himself another job, but that involves risk to his career and the reputation he built up at Oracle.

    Note that I don’t necessarily think the accusations are true. But my grandfather came here with nothing, my father put himself through college with a full-time job and I was fortunate enough to get through college without back-breaking debt. Now my ethnicity is an almost meaningless hyphen after “old” and “white”. Wouldn’t it be nice if that Indian guy came to the U.S. and could tell stores to his grandkids about how his ship came in when Oracle offered him a job in the States?

    • BY bluemountain184 says:

      EXPERIENCED DEVELOPER (11), I know what you are talking about.
      I have friend of mine who told me that it is probably the senior management of firms like Oracle and Cisco where the management “want” Indian descent people to do the work.
      They are fine with this arrangement, hence, as he described it, “to let Indians take over the company.”
      As a young white guy, I have figured that Silicon Valley corporations no longer want to hire anyone who is not Asian (i.e., anyone who is not Chinese or Indian descent).
      I have done an interview at Intel’s SC12 building (their main Silicon Valley R&D building), and there were hardly any white people inside the building, and particularly older white people, as Intel is notorious for getting rid of older white engineers (Intel layoff is coming).
      A friend of mine who worked there as a contractor also confirmed this. (Their executive building is full of older white people as managers tend to be white.).
      I do hardware design, but I know full well that corporations around here hire Indian graduate students over local people who are U.S. citizens (Mostly second generation Asian Americans with some white people like me.), at least for entry level positions.
      They do this because they know Indians on H-1B visas will not leave the firm or ask too much pay increase.
      It is the Top 1% executives who want this employment arrangement for their own personal enrichment.
      I guess you know too much about Silicon Valley as you noted that people buy Prius for long commutes.
      I myself drive a Prius, and it made my 52 mile round trip commute over the Santa Cruz mountain very economical since I used to get 50+ MPG on this route.
      Some people often mistaken hybrid cars for urban driving, but Prius’s superior fuel economy on highway makes it an excellent long distance commuter car.

  6. BY oregon111 says:

    all IT workers need to start suing the slavemasters – america is quickly turning into “old europe” — where royalty has money and does no work and everyone else toils for subsistance wages

  7. BY an oracle employe says:

    their god is money, they will do anything for more money.

    it’s simple, they hire more Indians because they are cheap => more profits.
    but, they got what they paid for.

    I really don’t understand how you cannot see that, when the entire capitalist system is built on this principle: make more and more and more money.

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