Last month, members of the California Senate passed a bill to protect foreign language speakers and workers in the state from facing language or national origin discrimination in the workplace. Senate Bill 111 would add language into the state’s civil rights law, the Unruh Civil Rights Act, and make it illegal for employers to require their employees to speak a certain language. Exceptions would be made for businesses with a “narrowly defined business necessity”.
The Unruh Civil Rights Act currently only protects employees from being discriminated against for their age, sex, race, religion, nationality, ancestry, disability, medical condition, sexual orientation, and marital status. The bill’s author, Senator Leland Yee, said, “No one should be discriminated against simply for speaking their language.”
If you or someone you know has been a victim of discrimination in the workplace, contact the Orange County employment lawyers of Daily Aljian at 949-861-2524 to learn more about your rights as an employee.