Federal and state laws prohibit discrimination in the workplace, including discrimination based on national origin. Even though New Jersey is home to individuals from diverse cultures and ethnic backgrounds, job applicants and employees suffer discrimination based on their national origin, ethnicity, or perceived ethnic background. That’s where Castronovo & McKinney, LLC comes in.
Our firm is a leading employment law practice representing clients throughout New Jersey. We have extensive experience handling employment discrimination claims and an impressive track record of success, having won significant settlements and jury awards. When you meet with us, we will listen to your concerns, choose the best course of action, and fight to protect your rights. Contact our office today to get started with an experienced discrimination lawyer.
How The Law Protects You From National Origin Discrimination
Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (Title VII) and the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (LAD) prohibit discrimination in any aspect of employment. Employers are forbidden from making employment decisions – hiring, compensating, promoting, training, terminating – based on a variety of protected characteristics, including national origin.
Also, harassment based on national origin is considered an unlawful form of discrimination. Harassment may involve offensive comments, conduct, or displays by anyone in the workplace (e.g. supervisors, coworkers, vendors, clients) about an employee’s national origin that create an abusive or hostile work environment.
If you have suffered discrimination or harassment because of your ethnic background or national origin, we will provide you with informed representation, protect your rights, and get you just compensation.
Types of National Origin Discrimination
National origin discrimination comes in many forms, including:
Discrimination Based on Country or Place of Origin
This form occurs when job applicants or employees are mistreated based on the country in which they or their ancestors originated. That includes individuals from areas not recognized as a nation, for example, refugees from a defunct government.
Discrimination Based on a National Origin Group
It is illegal for employers in New Jersey to discriminate against an ethnic group with a shared cultural heritage, ancestry, history, language, dialect, ideology, religion, style of dress, physical appearance, linguistic, or cultural traits.
Discrimination Based on Perceived Ethnicity
This form of discrimination is based on a perception that a job applicant or employee is part of an ethnic group, regardless of whether that person identifies with that ethnic group.
Discrimination Based on Affiliation or Association
Discrimination against a job applicant or employee can also occur because that person is associated with or related to someone of a particular national origin.
What Does National Origin Discrimination Look Like?
National origination discrimination can occur in several ways, such as:
- Rejecting job applicants with foreign accents, even though they are otherwise qualified to perform the job
- Making derogatory comments about an employee’s country of origin
- Establishing English-only rules that are not essential for business operations
- Requiring only non-Caucasian applicants to submit work authorization documents
- Commenting that an applicant “is not a good fit for our company’s culture,” or an employee “shouldn’t be speaking to clients because of their accent.”
It can be difficult to identify because employers know how to conceal their illegal and discriminatory motives. Employers may also have policies that apply to everyone but discriminate against individuals based on their national origin (e.g. English-only rules designed to discourage immigrants). These policies must be necessary for the safe, efficient operation of the business to be permissible. Otherwise, they may constitute national origin discrimination.
How Our Firm Can Help
If you believe that an employer refused to hire you because of your national origin or ethnicity, or if you suffered harassment because of where you are from, what you wear, or how you speak, trust Castronovo & McKinney to help you fight back.
Our discrimination attorney will handle all the details of your claim, including:
- Conducting a thorough investigation
- Interviewing witnesses – hiring managers, supervisors, and coworkers
- Collecting evidence such as personnel records, performance reviews, and electronic communications (e.g. emails, chats, text messages)
- Determining whether the employer has a history of discriminatory conduct based on national origin
- Communicating with the employer and their attorneys
While we work to resolve discrimination claims through negotiations, we will file an employment discrimination lawsuit if necessary. Rest assured, we will protect your rights in and out of the courtroom.
Damages You Can Recover For National Origin Discrimination
Our attorneys will fight to help you get compensation, including damages such as:
- Back pay
- Front pay
- The value of lost benefits (e.g. health insurance, vacation pay)
- Compensatory damages for pain and suffering
- Emotional distress
- Attorneys’ fees and court costs
In addition, the court may order your employer to take corrective measures by revising their policies and procedures to prevent discrimination and training managers and supervisors about discrimination and harassment in the workplace.
Contact Our Experienced New Jersey National Origin Discrimination Attorney
No one should put up with discrimination in the workplace based on ethnicity or national origin. Contact our office today so we can start working on your claim.