National Origin Discrimination
In this country, it is unlawful to discriminate against a worker because they are from a certain nation or because they are assumed to have a certain ancestry, culture, or ethnicity. National origin is just one of several categories protected from discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The New Jersey Law Against Discrimination also prohibits biased treatment at work because of an individual’s ancestry, nationality, and national origin. If you believe your ethnicity has been a barrier in your job, you might consider bringing a claim against your employer for job discrimination.
Forms of National Origin Discrimination
Job discrimination is sometimes obvious, such as verbal slurs, threats, and other offensive conduct related to your nationality. When these behaviors are persistent and severe, they can create a hostile environment that makes it hard for the abuser’s victim to feel safe at work. Yet, workplace discrimination regarding national origin is not always as obvious as verbal harassment. It often takes on more subtle and insidious forms based on certain employment decisions. You may even be overlooked entirely for a job because of your ethnicity.
If you are already employed, it can mean being turned down for promotions or making less money than colleagues with similar skills and experience. Sometimes a demotion or transfer is a sign that a worker is being treated unfairly for one reason or another. When that reason is something other than their job performance, discrimination might be at play.
Language Barriers and Job Discrimination
Workers who speak another language may find it difficult to communicate effectively with the public. The law only permits employers to consider an applicant’s language if the position requires the employee to speak English to perform their job duties. If that is the case, the employer can consider only those prospects fluent in English. Only if communication in English is necessary for the safe and efficient operations of the business can an employer require all employees to be fluent.
What to Do If You Experience National Origin Discrimination
Without a fair playing field, your ability to earn a living to support you and your family is impacted. Discrimination for who you are is morally and ethically wrong. Depending on the size of your workplace, you probably have several options to pursue compensation for the loss of a job or other employment opportunities because of your national origin.
If you experience job discrimination, take the following steps to protect your rights and your claim:
- Document the details: Keep a record of every incident of suspected discrimination. Document dates, times, and names of perpetrators and witnesses of national origin job discrimination.
- Report discrimination: Employers are required by law to investigate any claims of job discrimination in a timely manner. Give your employer the opportunity to correct the problem and hold the proper parties accountable.
- Seek legal guidance: It is important to enlist the counsel of an experienced Cherry Hill employment lawyer to objectively evaluate the situation and recommend the next best steps to take to end discrimination and pursue damages.
While every case is unique, damages for a job discrimination claim might include back pay, reinstatement, a promotion, attorneys fees, court costs, compensatory damages for the emotional pain caused by unfair treatment, and punitive damages to punish the employer who allowed or engaged in discriminatory practices.
Cherry Hill Employment Lawyers at Sidney L. Gold & Associates, P.C Represent Victims of National Origin Discrimination in the Workplace
To learn more about your legal options when facing job discrimination, contact the team of skilled Cherry Hill employment lawyers at Sidney L. Gold & Associates, P.C. With more than 40 years of experience tackling South Jersey’s toughest employment law matters, we are ready to advocate for you. Call us at 215-569-1999 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation today. With offices in Pennsauken, we proudly represent clients throughout South Jersey, including Haddonfield, Marlton, Moorestown, and Mount Laurel.