Justice Department Settles Immigration-Related Discrimination Claim Against Setpoint Systems Inc.
The Justice Department today announced that it reached a settlement with Setpoint Systems Inc., an Ogden, Utah, engineering company. The settlement resolves the Department’s investigation into whether the company engaged in hiring discrimination against non-U.S. citizens protected under the Immigration and Nationality Act’s (INA) anti-discrimination provision.
The Department’s investigation found that from 2015 to 2017, Setpoint Systems had an unlawful policy of hiring only U.S. citizens for professional positions and refusing to consider otherwise qualified non-U.S. citizens based on the company’s erroneous understanding of the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR). ITAR regulates specific exports of defense articles and services, and limits the access of certain sensitive information to U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals, lawful permanent residents, asylees, and refugees. ITAR thus does not authorize employers to only hire U.S. citizens. The anti-discrimination provision of the INA makes it unlawful for an employer to discriminate against an individual in the recruitment and hiring process based on citizenship status, unless authorized by law.
Under the settlement, Setpoint will pay a $17,475 civil penalty to the United States, train its human resources personnel on the requirements of the INA’s anti-discrimination provision, and be subject to departmental monitoring and reporting requirements.
“Employers may not adopt discriminatory hiring policies that harm workers who are protected by the law,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General John Gore. “We look forward to working with Setpoint Systems to ensure that its hiring procedures fully comply with the INA’s protections against citizenship status discrimination.”
The Division’s Immigrant and Employee Rights Section (IER) is responsible for enforcing the anti-discrimination provision of the INA. The statute prohibits, among other things, citizenship, immigration status, and national origin discrimination in hiring, firing, or recruitment or referral for a fee; unfair documentary practices; retaliation; and intimidation.
For more information about protections against employment discrimination under immigration laws, 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); sign up for a free webinar; email IER@usdoj.gov; or visit IER’s English and Spanish websites.
Applicants or workers who believe they were subjected to different documentary requirements based on their citizenship, immigration status, or national origin; or discrimination based on their citizenship, immigration status, or national origin in hiring, firing, or recruitment or referral, should contact IER’s worker hotline for assistance.