An Albertsons grocery store in San Diego violated the rights of Hispanic employees with an unwritten “English-only policy” forbidding workers to speak Spanish around non-Spanish speakers — even when conversing with one another during breaks or helping Spanish-speaking customers.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission sued Albertsons Companies, Inc., on Thursday in federal court. As mentioned in Los Angeles Times, the lawsuit accuses the Idaho-based chain of discriminating against Hispanic employees at San Diego-area stores, harassing them and subjecting them to a hostile workplace because of their race or country of origin.
“Employers have to be aware of the consequences of certain language policies,” Anna Park, an attorney for the commission’s district office covering San Diego County, stated. “Targeting a particular language for censorship is often synonymous with targeting a particular national origin, which is both illegal and highly destructive to workplace morale and productivity.”