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Ad for heath care company: No Haitians

Our country's oldest health care franchise is Interim Healthcare. Its main office is in Sunrise, Florida, and it is a hospice, home care and medical staffing company with over 300 franchises. Those 300 franchises employ over 40,000 health care workers. One might think that placing an advertisement for a worker would be covered somewhere along the way in the franchise training. Apparently, that was not the case.

The ad was placed in a Pennysaver newspaper in another state and said that a client was looking for a "laid back nurse, no haitians, must have strong respiratory mngt." The ad was placed by Interim Healthcare Inc., and quickly went viral. The founder of the Haitian American Nurses Association in the county where the ad was placed wondered, "What type of corporate culture would make it possible for an employee to even write down something like that?"

The Pennysaver and the healthcare company both issued public apologies. The state's attorney general office has started an investigation, stating, "The advertisement violates federal and state civil-rights laws that prohibit discrimination in hiring one the basis of national origin." One state senator said the ad was a "blatant form of employment discrimination."

Discrimination on the basis of national origin is against the law. If you feel you have been a victim of this type of discrimination or another type, such as racial, gender or age discrimination, an attorney can help you understand your options. You may be able to pursue damages in a lawsuit. It's best to write down any type of behavior that relates to the discrimination so you have written documentation of when and what occurred.

Source: The Daily Beast, "Health-Care Company: No Haitians Need Apply," Tina Traster, Dec. 13, 2015

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