California employees may be interested in understanding more about national origin discrimination, as defined by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. The discrimination involves mistreating an employee or applicant because they are associated or married to a person of a certain national origin or affiliation. This type of discrimination may also include mistreating employees or applicants due to their accent, ethnicity or because they appear to have emigrated from a certain country.
Employment decisions are not to be based on a worker’s accent unless it detrimental to performing job duties. In addition, employers may only require employees to speak fluent English if it is necessary for conducting normal business operations. Employers may also implement English-only mandates if it is required to provide an efficient or safe working environment. It is also unlawful for employers to implement policies or practices that are not directly related to the job and have an adverse impact on a certain ethnic group.
The law also prohibits anyone from harassing an employee due to their ethnicity, national origin or accent. The person accused of the harassing behavior may be a customer, fellow employee, direct supervisor, another supervisor or someone else who is not an employee. Even when the victim and the accused are of the same ethnicity, national origin discrimination may still be present. Discrimination is unlawful if it affects certain conditions of the employment, such as termination, the application process, hiring, training, benefits, promotions, assignments and pay.
Applicants or employees who feel victimized by national origin discrimination might benefit from contacting legal counsel. Lawyers may be able to investigate the complaint and help determine if the employer or any other parties were in violation of state or federal laws designed to protect employees. Legal counsel may also be able to help protect these workers from retaliation by employers.