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Beauty Company, Staffing Firms’ $11 Million Race Bias Pact OK’d

Bloomberg Law

December 19, 2023

  • Last of three pacts rolls in prior two settlements in case
  • Up to 9,385 workers will be paid from $6.6 million fund

A beauty products supplier and three staffing agencies will pay more than $11 million to end a decade-old lawsuit alleging a practice of racial preferences disfavoring Black workers for temporary assignments.

The third of three separate settlement agreements was preliminarily approved by the US District Court for the Northern District of Illinois on Monday. Under that pact, Vee Pak, Inc., Vee Pak, LLC—which does business as Voyant Beauty, and Staffing Network Holdings LLC will pay roughly $6.4 million into a settlement fund, and up to $4.5 million in attorneys’ fees and costs. That settlement fund will be combined with prior settlements reached with Personnel Staffing Group LLC for $135,000 and with Alternative Staffing Inc. for $93,000 to build a $6.6 million overall fund, according to the memorandum of law seeking preliminary settlement approval.

Attorneys for the workers “estimate that there may be as many as 9,385 total individuals in the” subclasses certified in connection with the three settlements, the memo said. The $6.6 million settlement fund will also be used to pay $10,000 or $15,000 service awards to workers who served as class representatives, the costs of the claims administration process, and “the employer’s share of payroll taxes,” according to the memo.

The subclasses include all Black laborers who sought work assignments between January 2011 and Oct. 21, 2013, or Dec. 31, 2015, and weren’t assigned on one or more occasions to work at Vee Pak, the memo said.

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Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC, National Legal Advocacy Network, and Hughes Socol Piers Resnick Dym Ltd. represent the workers. Goldstine, Skrodzki, Russian, Nemec & Hoff Ltd. and McDermott Will & Emery LLP represent Vee Pak. Korey Richardson LLP represents Staffing Network.

Read Beauty Company, Staffing Firms’ $11 Million Race Bias Pact OK’d.