Monday, August 13, 2012

EEOC Making Bigger Effort to Target Discrimination and Harassment of Hispanics in the Workplace

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") announced recently that it was going to make a bigger effort to root out and pursue claims involving discrimination and harassment of Hispanics in the workplace.  One case toward that end is EEOC v. RJB Prop­­erties, No. 10-C-2001, ND IL, 2012 which involves alleged abuse of Hispanic janitorial workers in the Chicago area.  A federal judge has ordered a trial in the case.

The case involves a manager who appears to dislike Hispanics and allegedly favors black employees. Testimony included claims the manager frequently used slurs like “wetback,” and “bean eaters.’ In meetings, she was said to have openly stated she wanted to get rid of the Hispanics in the company.  For example, one group of claims going to trial involves several His­­panic workers who allegedly fell asleep on the job and were terminated. Un­­­­for­­tu­­nately for the company, several supervisors testified that the manager had urged them to find ways to get rid of Hispanic workers, including falsely accusing them of sleeping at work.
The EEOC has also launched a website in Spanish to assist Hispanic workers.

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