California accuses Cisco of job discrimination based mostly on Indian worker’s caste

California accuses Cisco of job discrimination based on Indian employee's caste

a sign hanging off the side of a building: FILE PHOTO: The Cisco logo is seen at their booth at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona

© Reuters/Sergio Perez
FILE PHOTO: The Cisco brand is seen at their sales space on the Cellular World Congress in Barcelona

By Paresh Dave

OAKLAND, Calif. (Reuters) – California regulators sued Cisco Techniques Inc on Tuesday, accusing it of discriminating towards an Indian-American worker and permitting him to be harassed by two managers as a result of he was from a decrease Indian caste than them.

U.S. employment regulation doesn’t particularly bar caste-based discrimination, however California’s Division of Truthful Employment and Housing contends within the lawsuit that India’s lingering caste system relies on protected courses resembling faith.

The lawsuit, filed in federal courtroom in San Jose, doesn’t identify the alleged sufferer. It states he has been a principal engineer at Cisco’s San Jose headquarters since October 2015 and that he was raised on the backside of India’s caste hierarchy as a Dalit, as soon as referred to as “untouchables.”

That caste hierarchy was enforced within the office, in line with the lawsuit, which accuses the 2 former engineering managers of harassment.

Cisco mentioned it didn’t have instant remark, saying that it deliberate to subject a press release at a later time.

Like different massive Silicon Valley employers, Cisco’s workforce contains hundreds of Indian immigrants, most of whom have been introduced up as Brahmins or different excessive castes.

The civil rights group Equality Labs in a 2018 report cited within the lawsuit discovered that 67% of Dalits surveyed felt handled unfairly at their U.S. workplaces.

Some employers have begun taking motion. Massachusetts-based Brandeis College final 12 months added caste to its nondiscrimination coverage in what’s believed to be a landmark transfer in U.S. larger training.

At Cisco, the unnamed worker reported his supervisor to human assets in November 2016 for outing his caste to colleagues. The supervisor allegedly retaliated, however Cisco decided caste discrimination was not unlawful and points continued by 2018, the lawsuit states.

Cisco reassigned the worker’s duties and remoted him from colleagues, rejected a increase and alternatives that will have led to 1 and denied him two promotions, in line with the lawsuit.

(Reporting by Paresh Dave; Modifying by Leslie Adler)

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