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National Origin Discrimination at Work

National Origin Discrimination

National origin discrimination involves treating people (applicants or employees) unfavorably because they are from a particular country or part of the world, because of ethnicity or accent, or because they appear to be of a certain ethnic background (even if they are not).

National origin discrimination also can involve treating people unfavorably because they are married to (or associated with) a person of a certain national origin.

Discrimination can occur when the victim and the person who inflicted the discrimination are the same national origin.

Read more about National Origin Discrimination at eeoc.gov.

National Origin Discrimination & Work Situations

The law forbids discrimination when it comes to any aspect of employment, including hiring, firing, pay, job assignments, promotions, layoff, training, fringe benefits, and any other term or condition of employment.

Read more about National Origin Discrimination at eeoc.gov.

National Origin & Harassment

It is unlawful to harass a person because of his or her national origin. Harassment can include, for example, offensive or derogatory remarks about a person's national origin, accent or ethnicity. Although the law doesn't prohibit simple teasing, offhand comments, or isolated incidents that are not very serious, harassment is illegal when it is so frequent or severe that it creates a hostile or offensive work environment or when it results in an adverse employment decision (such as the victim being fired or demoted).

The harasser can be the victim's supervisor, a supervisor in another area, a co-worker, or someone who is not an employee of the employer, such as a client or customer.

Read more about National Origin Discrimination at eeoc.gov.

National Origin Discrimination Action

If you believe you may have been discriminated against in employment due to your birthplace, ancestry, culture or language, you may submit a discrimination complaint through the TWC Civil Rights Division. To learn more about the complaint process, see How to Submit an Employment Discrimination Complaint.

Texas Labor Code Chapter 21 and Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of l964 protect individuals against employment discrimination on the basis of national origin. National origin is identified as the birthplace, ancestry, culture or linguistic characteristics common to a specific ethnic group. The law applies to private employers with 15 or more employees, and to all state and local governmental entities no matter how many employees they have.

Equal employment opportunity cannot be denied for any of these reasons:

  • Marriage or association with persons of a national origin group
  • Membership or association with specific ethnic promotion groups
  • Attendance or participation in schools, churches, temples or mosques generally associated with a national origin group
  • A surname associated with a national origin group

The sections below address common concerns related to possible discrimination based on national origin.

Read more about National Origin Discrimination at twc.state.tx.us.