In Costa Mesa, California, six employees of Fairview Development Center have filed a lawsuit against the facility because of its no-Spanish policy claiming that it’s discrimination.
The lawsuit, which was filed on June 18th, claims that the facility has a strict no-Spanish-speaking rule that is aggressively enforced during work hours, on breaks, and during lunch. These six long-time employees claim they feel like this is discrimination.
The California Department of Fair Employment Act says that employers can’t prohibit the use of any language at the workplace unless its use would prohibit business activity.
The plaintiffs are five food service workers and a custodian all of whom don’t interact with patients, their attorney Joseph Scully said.
“If two 50-year-old ladies washing dishes want to have a conversation in Spanish, how is there an overriding business necessity?” Scully said.
The suing employees, Rosaura Herrera, Lillian Torres, Delfino Herrera, Jorge Torres, Ana Alicia and Alfonso Ramirez, are long-time staffers and native Spanish speakers.
The employees say they feel “systematically bullied and intimidated” and they feel like “second class employees” since managers often eavesdrop on them and hand out disciplinary notes if they’re caught speaking in Spanish.
The Fairview Development Center declined to comment.
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