Justice Department Settles Immigration-Related Discrimination Claim Against Security Services Company
(STL.News) The Justice Department today announced that it reached a settlement agreement with G4S Secure Solutions, Inc. (G4S), a private security services company based in Jupiter, Florida. The settlement resolves a claim that the company discriminated against a worker by requiring him to provide unnecessary documentation to prove his immigration status because the worker was not a U.S. citizen, in violation of the anti-discrimination provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).
“Employers are not allowed to ask workers for additional, unnecessary documents because of their citizenship or immigration status,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Pamela S. Karlan of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “The Justice Department looks forward to working with G4S to ensure its compliance with the INA’s anti-discrimination requirements in the future.”
The department initiated its investigation after a lawful permanent resident filed a charge alleging that G4S required him to provide additional employment eligibility documentation before assigning him to a worksite, even though he had already presented sufficient documents to prove his identity and legal right to work in the United States, which is all that workers are required to demonstrate. The investigation determined that a G4S Human Resources manager declined to place the newly hired security guard at a worksite because he had presented a Permanent Resident Card along with a notice showing that the card had been extended for one year past the expiration date listed on the card, and because the guard did not yet have his new Permanent Resident Card. Lawful permanent residents are authorized to work permanently.
In addition to showing his extended Permanent Resident Card, the investigation also revealed that the security guard had already provided G4S his unrestricted Social Security card, which alone is sufficient to establish indefinite employment authorization. The INA’s anti-discrimination provision generally prohibits employers from asking workers for more or different documents than are required by law for the employment eligibility verification process based on a worker’s citizenship status or national origin.
Under the terms of the settlement agreement, G4S will, among other things, pay more than $13,000 in back pay to the former employee and $1,400 to the U.S. Treasury; train its workers; and be subject to departmental monitoring for a two-year period.
The Civil Rights Division’s Immigrant and Employee Rights Section (IER) is responsible for enforcing the anti-discrimination provision of the INA. The statute prohibits citizenship status and national origin discrimination in hiring, firing, or recruitment or referral for a fee; unfair documentary practices; and retaliation and intimidation. Learn more about how to avoid discrimination in verifying employment eligibility here.