FILE A COMPLAINT

National Origin and Ancestry




I was the first Native American/Mexican police officer hired by my borough's police department 
Q It doesn't seem to matter that I'm a cop. I've been humiliated and degraded by my fellow police officers, superiors and representatives of the borough. They are trying to get me fired by selectively enforcing the rules and regulations of the borough against him. Also, the borough strictly interpreted every applicable provision and used all available discretion to file internal charges as well as bringing disciplinary actions against me when my fellow officers were not treated in the same manner. The borough may have hired me, but they don't want me working for them. What can I do?

A It is unlawful under the PHRAct for an employer to discriminate (including workplace harassment) against an employee because of the employee's race, color, national origin or ancestry. All of these may be involved in your situation. You may file a complaint with the PHRC, which will investigate and take the appropriate action.

I have a Spanish accent. I went to see an apartment 
Q The manager made me show him proof that I was in the country legally. While I was there, two other people who didn't have accents, came in and asked to see available apartments, but they were not asked for proof. Can they require this?

A It is unlawful under the PHRAct for a person renting an apartment to ask if a prospective renter, who has an accent, is in the country legally, unless the same question is asked of all prospective renters. Whether or not the question is asked of all prospective renters, it is unlawful under the PHRAct to deny someone an apartment because of their national origin. If you believe you have been denied an apartment for this reason, you may file a complaint with the PHRC, which will investigate and take the appropriate action.

I was with a small group of Asian friends at a local restaurant 
Q We gave a name to the host and were told to wait until space for our group became available. While we were waiting, we were talking in our native language in the lobby area, two other larger groups came in after us and were seated in the restaurant. Our name was never called. We waited an hour and left. Can I do anything about this?

A It is unlawful under the PHRAct for a public accommodation, such as a restaurant, to discriminate in service, or any other matter, because of a patron's race, color, ancestry or national origin. All of these may be implicated in your situation. You may file a complaint with the PHRC, which will investigate and take the appropriate action.

Since the day I started working for this construction company two years ago 
Q I am the only Asian who has ever worked here. Every day after I punch the time clock, the harassment starts. I've heard all the comments by my supervisor: "we checked with the other employees before hiring a `gook.'" He even told me that he had served time in Vietnam and would give `pay backs' to me, plus he says other remarks that are way out of line. My supervisor has also refused me overtime work and won't train me to operate equipment that would give me more money. Now, after he found out that my wife is White, he is starting to make sex cracks about her and my marriage. All I want to do is earn a living. How much harassment do I have to take?

A It is unlawful under the PHRAct for an employer to discriminate (including workplace harassment) against an employee because of the employee's race, color, national origin or ancestry. All of these may be involved in your situation. You may file a complaint with the PHRC, which will investigate and take the appropriate action.