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Press Release

Justice Department Settles Immigration-Based Discrimination Claim Against New York Hospital

For Immediate Release
Office of Public Affairs

The Justice Department announced today that it reached an agreement with Holliswood Hospital, a hospital in Queens, N.Y., resolving claims that the hospital violated the anti-discrimination provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), when it required newly hired lawful permanent residents to provide more or different documents during the Form I-9 employment eligibility verification process. 


The investigation stemmed from a charge filed by an individual that Holliswood terminated her after discovering that her employment eligibility needed to reverified in the future, despite the fact that she was work authorized. The subsequent investigation revealed that Holliswood imposed greater requirements to verify employment eligibility for lawful permanent residents as compared to U.S. citizen employees and terminated the charging party as a result of the discriminatory documentary practices. The INA requires employers to treat all authorized workers in the same manner during the employment eligibility verification process, regardless of their national origin or citizenship status.


Under the settlement agreement, Holliswood will pay $1,182 in back pay to the charging party and $5,000 in civil penalties to the United States. Holliswood will also train its human resources staff about employers’ responsibilities to avoid discrimination in the employment eligibility verification process and be subject to reporting and compliance monitoring by the department for 18 months.


“The Civil Rights Division is committed to protecting all work authorized individuals from discriminatory practices in the employment eligibility verification process, which can create unwarranted barriers to the lawful employment of immigrant workers,” said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division. “We commend Holliswood for working with the division to reach a fair resolution that prioritizes future compliance.”


The Office of Special Counsel for Immigration Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) is responsible for enforcing the anti-discrimination provision of the INA.   For more information about protections against employment discrimination under the immigration laws, call the OSC’s worker hotline at 1-800-255-7688 (1-800-237-2525, TDD for hearing impaired), call the OSC’s employer hotline at 1-800-255-8155 (1-800-362-2735, TDD for hearing impaired), sign up for a no-cost webinar at , email or visit the website at .

Updated September 15, 2014

Press Release Number: 12-1529