BALTIMORE (Legal Newsline) — The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission announced a lawsuit Aug. 28 against Maritime Autowash Inc. for allegations of subjecting a class of workers to a hostile work environment and disparate treatment based on their race and national origin.

"Sadly, more than 50 years after the passage of the Civil Rights Act, this employer thought it could get away with subjecting Hispanic workers to separate and unequal pay, job opportunities and working conditions," said EEOC regional attorney Debra M. Lawrence. "The EEOC is dedicated to protecting vulnerable workers from such discrimination and harassment and ensuring that all employees receive equal pay for equal work."

EEOC alleges Maritime segregated a class of Hispanic workers, placing them in lower-paying jobs as laborers or detailers, and did so solely based on their race and national origin. The EEOC seeks compensatory and punitive damages for the class and injunctive relief to prevent discrimination in the future.

"Exploiting workers based on national origin and race is despicable and unlawful,” said Spencer H. Lewis Jr., district director of the EEOC's Philadelphia District Office. “The class members courageously opposed the harassment and discrimination. Unfortunately, Maritime again failed to do the right thing and made a bad situation worse by firing the discrimination victims. Now the EEOC will take vigorous action to rectify this situation."

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