FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASECR
FRIDAY, JUNE 11, 1999(202) 353-8584
WWW.USDOJ.GOVTDD (202) 514-1888
SMITHKLINE BEECHAM TO SETTLE ALLEGATIONS OF WORKPLACE RETALIATION
WASHINGTON, DC-- SmithKline Beecham Clinical Laboratories will pay almost $20,000 to settle allegations of workplace retaliation, under an agreement reached today with the Justice Department's Office of Special Counsel for Immigration Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC).
Today's settlement resolves a complaint filed by Matthew Arri, an employee relations representative in the Human Resources Department, alleging that SmithKline Beecham, based in St. Louis, Missouri, retaliated against him after he found potential violations of the antidiscrimination provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) and brought them to the attention of senior management. Mr. Arri was terminated by the company soon after.
During the course of its investigation, OSC determined there was reasonable cause to believe that the employee had been retaliated against by the company. As a result, SmithKline Beecham has agreed to pay $19,000 in back pay and civil penalties.
"Federal law protects individuals who come forward against employment discrimination," said John Trasviña, Special Counsel for Immigration Related Unfair Employment Practices. "No one has to choose between their job and doing the right thing."
The Office of Special Counsel was established to ensure that all work-authorized individuals--U.S. citizens and non-citizens alike--are not discriminated against in the hiring process because of their national origin or citizenship status. OSC has received more than 6,000 complaints and recovered more than $1.8 million in back pay and $1.25 million in civil penalties. Worker retaliation cases, while rare, are investigated and pursued by the Office of Special Counsel.
Individuals seeking more information or assistance provided by OSC may call toll-free, 1-800-255-7688 or 202-616-5594 or write to:
Office of Special Counsel for Immigration Related Unfair Employment Practices
P.O. Box 27728
Washington, D.C. 20038-7728