WASHINGTON– John Jay College, a New York City public college in the City University of New York (CUNY) system, has agreed to pay $23,260.00 in civil penalties and $10,072.23 in back pay to a former employee in order to settle a lawsuit filed by the Justice Department on April 15. The lawsuit alleged that John Jay College engaged in a pattern or practice of citizenship status discrimination by requesting documents issued by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) from non-U.S. citizens, but not from U.S. citizens, during the employment eligibility verification Form I-9 process.
As part of the settlement, John Jay has also agreed to train its recruitment personnel on their responsibilities not to discriminate, implement a policy prohibiting discrimination on the basis of citizenship status, and provide periodic reports to the Department of Justice for three years.
The Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) in the Civil Rights Division, which conducted the investigation in this matter, will continue to monitor John Jay College to ensure compliance with the settlement agreement. OSC is responsible for enforcing the anti-discrimination provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), which protect U.S. citizens and certain work-authorized individuals from citizenship status discrimination. The INA also protects all work-authorized individuals from national origin discrimination, over-documentation in the employment eligibility verification process, and retaliation.
“All workers authorized to work in the United States have the right to look for a job without encountering discrimination because of their immigration status or national origin,” said Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division. “We are pleased to have reached the settlement with John Jay College, and look forward to continuing to work with all employers, both public and private, to educate them about the protections and obligations under the law.”