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What is origin discrimination?

Missouri employees have the right to a fair and comfortable workplace, no matter their age, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation or race. One other way that employees can be discriminated against is national origin discrimination. According to the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, this involves treating employees or applicants unfavorably because there are from a different part of the world or country. Origin discrimination is also treating someone unfavorable because they look as if they are from a certain ethnic background or because they have an accent.

Harassment for origin can include:

  •          Derogatory or offensive remarks about an applicant or employee’s origin
  •          Harassment that creatives an offensive or hostile work environment for the employee
  •          When an adverse employment decision, such as a demotion or firing, is the result of discrimination

Employees and applicants can be harassed by a co-worker, a supervisor in another department, their own supervisor or even someone who is not an employee of their employer. A client or customer may also discriminate against a person because of their origin.

If speaking English fluently is required to perform the job effectively, the employer can require the employee to speak English. This rule is only allowed if it is necessary to provide an efficient, safe business atmosphere and is not used for discriminatory reasons.

If the employee or applicant has an accent and is discriminated against because of it, they may be dealing with origin discrimination. An employer also cannot fire, hire, refer or recruit a worker based on their immigration or citizenship status because of the Immigration Reform and Control Act.

This information is provided for educational purposes and should not be interpreted as legal advice.

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