San Diego, California - The Justice Department announced Thursday that it reached a settlement agreement with the University of California, San Diego. The settlement resolves the Department’s investigation into whether the University’s Resource Management and Planning Vice Chancellor Area (RMP) discriminated against workers in violation of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) when verifying their continued authorization to work.
The Department’s investigation concluded that the RMP unnecessarily required certain work-authorized immigrants to re-establish their work authorization when their documents expired, based on the citizenship status of those individuals when they were hired. The antidiscrimination provision of the INA prohibits such requests for documents when based on an employee’s citizenship status or national origin.
Under the settlement, the University will pay a penalty to the United States, train its RMP human resources personnel on the requirements of the INA’s anti-discrimination provision, and be subject to departmental monitoring and reporting requirements.
“Employers must comply with anti-discrimination laws, not only when employees are first hired, but throughout their employment,” said Acting Assistant Attorney General John Gore of the Civil Rights Division. “We will work with the University to ensure that its employment eligibility reverification procedures avoid unnecessary burdens on permanently work-authorized immigrants based on citizenship status.”
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.
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.