A North Carolina AutoZone store was just sued by the EEOC for national origin discrimination and harassment.
According to the EEOC, the Hispanic employee was forced to resign, after months of being subjected by the store manager and two co-workers to “unwelcome derogatory slurs, comments and jokes,” such as being called a “sp-c,” “beaner,” “border hopper” and “island n—-r.”
An EEOC attorney stated: “The EEOC alleges that Mr. Rodriguez suffered outrageous episodes of harassment that no employee should be forced to endure. The EEOC is committed to the elimination of such illegal misconduct in the workplace and this lawsuit reaffirms the EEOC’s commitment to the eradication of harassment based on national origin.”
We have seen racial slurs in cases before, some which were severe enough to impel courts to hold that even a single usage consituted a hostile work environment. This may be one of them — although the slurs, as alleged, were seemingly both severe and pervasive enough that both alternative elements of the “hostile work environment test may be satisfied.