Contractor Sued Over Alleged Harassment of Hispanic Workers

PETALUMA, Calif.

A construction contractor was sued based on allegations that a supervisor referred to workers as “stupid Mexicans” and said “Latinos are the slaves of the twenty-first century,” according to a lawsuit filed Thursday in federal court by U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

Documents filed at the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California said that a supervisor for the Petaluma-based general contractor Midstate Construction Corporation routinely used crude language to refer to workers, and posed questions to Hispanics concerning drug and alcohol abuse that other workers did not face. These actions constitute harassment due to national origin, EEOC attorneys said.

Calls to the company was not immediately returned.

“All employees have a right to work in an atmosphere free of discrimination and harassment,” said EEOC San Francisco Regional Attorney William R. Tamayo.

The suit seeks monetary damages, supervisor accountability, training on anti-discrimination laws, reporting of retaliation complaints to the EEOC, and other relief. The legal action was only taken after the EEOC tried to reach voluntary settlement with the contractor, said attorneys with the organization.

Associated Press



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