Justice Department Settles Immigration-Related Discrimination Claim Against Indiana Staffing Company
The Department of Justice announced that it has reached a settlement agreement with JMJ Talent Solutions Inc. (JMJ Talent Solutions), a staffing company with four locations throughout Indiana. The settlement resolves a claim that JMJ Talent Solutions discriminated against three non-U.S. citizens because of their citizenship status when it asked them to present specific documentation to prove they had permission to work in the United States instead of letting them choose which valid documents to show.
“Employers may not discriminate against workers when verifying their permission to work in the United States – such as by rejecting their valid documentation, requesting specific documentation, or requesting more documents than necessary — based on the workers’ citizenship status or national origin,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “All workers have the right to choose the valid documents they want to present for that process. The Justice Department will continue to fight to remove unlawful barriers in the workplace.”
Based on its investigation, the department determined that, after rejecting valid documentation that a non-U.S. citizen presented to prove she was allowed to work in the United States, JMJ Talent Solutions requested that she present specific immigration documents, including a Permanent Resident Card with an unexpired date. The department also determined that the staffing company asked at least two other lawful permanent residents to present their Permanent Resident Cards to prove their permission to work.
The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) prohibits employers from rejecting documentation that reasonably appears to be valid and to relate to the person who presents it, from asking workers to show specific documentation, and from asking for more documentation than the law requires to prove their permission to work. Employers that do so may violate the INA’s anti-discrimination provision.
Under the terms of the settlement agreement, JMJ Talent Solutions will pay a civil penalty, post notices informing workers of their rights under the INA’s anti-discrimination provision, train its staff and be subject to departmental monitoring for three years.
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 discrimination based on citizenship status and national origin in hiring, firing, or recruitment or referral for a fee; unfair documentary practices; and retaliation and intimidation.
Learn more about IER’s work and how to get assistance through this brief video. Find more information on how employers can avoid discriminating when verifying an employee’s permission to work on IER’s website. Applicants or employees who believe they were discriminated against based on their citizenship, immigration status, or national origin in hiring, firing, recruitment, or during the employment eligibility verification process (Form I-9 and E-Verify); or subjected to retaliation, may file a charge. The public can also call IER’s worker hotline at 1-800-255-7688 (1-800-237-2515, TTY for hearing impaired); call IER’s employer hotline at 1-800-255-8155 (1-800-237-2515, TTY for hearing impaired); email IER@usdoj.gov; sign up for a free webinar; or visit IER’s English and Spanish websites. Subscribe to GovDelivery to receive updates from IER. View the Spanish translation of this press release here.