National Origin Discrimination Lawyer Philadelphia Pennsylvania
National origin discrimination involves treating people unfavorably because they are from a particular country or part of the world, because of ethnicity or accent, or because they appear to be of a certain ethnic background (even if they are not). National origin discrimination also can involve treating people unfavorably because they are married to or associated with a person of a certain national origin or because of their connection with an ethnic organization or group. Discrimination can occur when the victim and the person who inflicted the discrimination are the same national origin.
Federal laws prohibit discrimination based on a person's birthplace, ancestry, culture or language. This means people cannot be denied equal opportunity because they or their family are from another country, because they have a name or accent associated with a national origin group, because they participate in certain customs associated with a national origin group, or because they are married to or associate with people of a certain national origin.
The law makes it illegal for an employer or other covered entity to use an employment policy or practice that applies to everyone, regardless of national origin, if it has a negative impact on people of a certain national origin and is not job-related or necessary to the operation of the business.
It should be noted that employer can only require an employee to speak fluent English if fluency in English is necessary to perform the job effectively. An "English-only rule", which requires employees to speak only English on the job, is only allowed if it is needed to ensure the safe or efficient operation of the employer's business and is put in place for nondiscriminatory reasons. An employer may not base an employment decision on an employee's foreign accent, unless the accent seriously interferes with the employee's job performance.
Some examples of national origin discrimination are listed below:
- A person of South Asian descent is harassed by a co-worker who is a member of a skinhead group who yells racial epithets at him and threatens to beat him.
- A plant supervisor, who is a Ku Klux Klan member, repeatedly tells his subordinates that Mexicans and Puerto Ricans should go "back where they came from."
- An HMO medical center that enrolls Medicaid patients tells a Mexican American woman with cerebral palsy to come back another day for an appointment but provides immediate assistance to others.
- A school fails to provide a child who has difficulty speaking English, with the necessary assistance to help her learn English and other subjects.
- A public school where the majority of the students are Haitian does not offer honors classes. Other public schools in the district that do not have many Haitian students offer both honors and advanced placement courses.
- A transit worker's supervisor constantly makes racial epithets against the worker because his family is from Iran. The supervisor puts up a fake sign on the bulletin board telling everyone not to trust the worker because he is a terrorist.
- A woman who immigrated from Russia applies for a job as an accountant. The employer turns her down because she speaks with an accent even though she is able to perform the job requirements.
- A company requires applicants who appear or sound foreign to show work authorization documents before allowing them to complete an employment application while native born Caucasian applicants are not required to show any documents before completing employment applications.
- A Native Hawaiian family is told by the rental agent that no apartments are available, even though apartments are available and are shown to white applicants.
- A Latina woman is charged a higher interest rate and fees than white male customers who have similar financial histories and apply for the same type of loan.
- In a restaurant, a group of Asian Americans waits for over an hour to be served, while white and Latino customers receive prompt service.
- Haitian American visitors to a hotel are told they must pay in cash rather than by credit card, are charged higher rates than other customers, and are not provided with the same amenities, such as towels and soap.
- Police officers constantly pull over cars driven by Latinos, for certain traffic violations, but rarely pull over white drivers for the same violations.
- A police officer questioning a man of Vietnamese origin on the street gets angry when the man is unable to answer his questions because he does not speak English. The Officer arrests the man for disorderly conduct.
- A state's psychiatric hospital has no means of providing treatment for people who do not speak English.
- A local social services agency does not provide information or job training in Korean even though one quarter of local residents speak only Korean.
- A hospital near the Texas/Mexico border dresses its security officers in clothes that look like INS uniforms to scare Latinos away from the emergency room. Latino patients are told to bring their own translators before they can see a doctor.
- Despite requests from voters in a large Spanish-speaking community, election officials refuse to provide election materials, including registration forms and sample ballots, in
- Spanish or to allow Spanish speakers to bring translators into the voting booth.
- A polling official requires a dark-skinned voter, who speaks with a foreign accent and has an unfamiliar last name, to provide proof of American citizenship, but does not require proof of citizenship from white voters.
Unfortunately, many national origin discrimination cases may go unreported in the United States because victims of discrimination do not know their legal rights, or may be afraid to complain to the government. If you think you, or someone you know, has been discriminated against because of national origin and want to learn more about exercising your legal rights, please contact our experienced Pennsylvania national origin discrimination attorneys at the Lassen Law Firm. The victim of national origin discrimination has a right to file a civil lawsuit in court and recover financial compensation. The Lassen Law Firm focuses on achieving the best results for clients who have been subject to national origin discrimination. Please contact the Lassen Law Firm to see how we can help.
The Lassen Law Firm only deducts a 29% contingency fee, not the standard 45% like other firms. We serve ALL of Pennsylvania. We can sign you up over the phone and start working on your case today.
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Authored by: Christian Lassen