Suburban Chicago Hilton to Pay $195,000 to Resolve National Origin Harassment Suit

A Federal Judge has entered a $195,000 consent decree to resolve a national origin harassment lawsuit brought by the agency against the Hilton Lisle/Naperville Hotel in Lisle, Ill.  The lawsuit charged that the Hilton Lisle/Naperville violated federal law by subjecting Hispanic employees in the hotel kitchen to offensive comments.  The complaint alleges that the hotel’s executive chef regularly referred to Hispanic employees as “s–cs” and “wetbacks.”  The three-year consent decree resolving the suit, approved by District Judge Edmund Chang on May 5, 2011, will provide $195,000 in monetary relief.  The decree also requires the Hilton Lisle/Naperville to report any further complaints of retaliation or national origin harassment to the EEOC. The decree requires remedial training for all employees at the hotel, and mandates that the executive chef, who was alleged to have engaged in the harassment of Hispanic kitchen employees, receive personal anti-discrimination training. The decree includes an injunction prohibiting further discrimination on the basis of national origin and barring retaliation for reporting or complaining about discrimination.  Full article.

Title VII prohibits not only intentional discrimination, but also practices that have the effect of discriminating against individuals because of their race, color, national origin, religion, or sex.  It is illegal to discriminate against an individual because of birthplace, ancestry, culture, or linguistic characteristics common to a specific ethnic group.  A rule requiring that employees speak only English on the job may violate Title VII unless an employer shows that the requirement is necessary for conducting business. If the employer believes such a rule is necessary, employees must be informed when English is required and the consequences for violating the rule.

The attorneys at Leeds Morelli & Brown, P.C., dedicate a large amount of their practice to discrimination claims.  For any questions, contact an attorney at the Leeds Morelli & Brown P.C. law firm for a free consultation at 1-800-585-4658. Leeds Morelli & Brown P.C.’s website is located at www.lmblaw.com.