Dallas-based DHL Global Forwarding has agreed to pay $201,000 to settle charges that it failed to stop supervisors from harassing Hispanic employees. The EEOC had sued DHL, alleging that the freight forwarder’s inaction allowed a hostile work environment to fester.
According to the complaint, Hispanic workers at a Dallas warehouse were regularly called “wetback,” “beaner” and other derogatory names. Some supervisors berated workers for speaking Spanish in the workplace, even though it didn’t affect their job performance.
The suit also alleged the company fired a union steward for complaining about the harassment, although he was later reinstated. The steward will receive some of the settlement funds.
Note: Employers must address discriminatory behavior when they see it or face consequences like these. This employer will have the EEOC looking over its shoulder for the next three years.