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Target sued for racially offensive training memo

The document given to managers at a distribution center was full of Hispanic stereotypes

Target has its tail between its legs thanks to a new lawsuit against the company which revealed the distribution of an outrageously offensive training memo full of Hispanic stereotypes.

Three former employees of the retailer brought the suit, alleging discrimination based on not only the note, but that the all-white management at the distribution center in question used racial slurs against them, and that they were fired for complaining about their treatment.

Target has acknowledged and apologized for the memo, and claims that it was only used at the one center, informally. The document told managers to be aware of differences between Hispanic employees and read in part:

     a. Food: not everyone eats tacos and burritos;

     b. Music: not everyone dances to salsa;

     c. Dress: not everyone wears a sombrero;

     d. Mexicans (lower education level, some may be undocumented);

     e. Cubans (Political refugees, legal status, higher education level); and

     f. They may say 'OK, OK' and pretend to understand, when they do not, just to save face.

“This document, which was used during conversations at one distribution center, was never part of any formal or company-wide training. We take accountability for its contents and are truly sorry,” Target told Consumerist.

Read more at The Atlantic Wire and Bloomberg Businessweek.


For more coverage of discrimination suits on InsideCounsel, see below:

Lawyers ask for arbitration in high profile discrimination case

Two Biglaw firms contend with employment litigation

EEOC files first-ever GINA class action

Labor: Has the standard for discrimination claims truly changed for NYC employers and employees?

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