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American-Arab Discrimination: Employment Retaliation Case

ADC Files Amicus Curiae Brief to the U.S. Supreme Court in Employment Retaliation Case

Washington, DC, April 10, 2013 — This afternoon, the American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) filed an amicus curiae brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in support of Dr. Naiel Nassar, an Arab Muslim of Egyptian decent. ADC believes that Dr. Nassar’s employer illegally and discriminatorily retaliated against Dr. Nassar after he submitted a resignation letter in which he complained about his supervisor’s discriminatory conduct. Specifically, Dr. Nasser’s employer rescinded its employment offer to him after he complained that his supervisor treated him unfairly because he is an Arab and a Muslim.

Click here to read the brief.

In the brief, ADC stresses that requiring plaintiffs to prove that the only reason for their employer’s retaliation was discrimination would be too high of a burden on plaintiffs since employers often make decisions on the basis of multiple factors. Instead, ADC argued for a standard whereby employees who show that their employer’s adverse action was motivated at least in part by discrimination should be able to succeed on their retaliation claim. The Court’s decision in this case is especially important to ADC, as Arab and Muslim Americans have been filing record amounts of discrimination and retaliation charges since the tragic events of September 11, 2001. Last month, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission provided ADC with startling statistics on employment discrimination and retaliation trends.

Dr. Nassar received favorable results at both the trial and appellate levels. ADC’s brief respectfully argues that the Supreme Court should uphold the Fifth Circuit’s decision that applied the “mixed-motive” causation standard to the anti-retaliation provision of Title VII. ADC’s efforts were motivated by its unwavering protection of the rights of Arab and Muslim Americans (and other groups protected by Title VII). Employees must be able to report discrimination without fear of an adverse employment action.

This brief has again distinguished ADC and demonstrated its ability to make an impact on a national level. ADC is a leading advocate for the preservation of fairness with regard to the retaliation provision of Title VII.

ADC appreciates the many organizations that joined ADC’s brief to display their support. These groups include: the Arab American Institute (AAI), the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF), the Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), Muslim Advocates, and the Sikh Coalition. ADC thanks the firm of Cadwalader, Wickersham, & Taft LLP for representing ADC in this case – special thanks also to David Williams, Samer Korkor, and Colleen Kukowski.

The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC) is the largest Arab American grassroots organization committed to protecting civil rights, promoting mutual understanding, and preserving cultural heritage. It was founded in 1980 by former Senator James Abourezk. ADC has a national network of chapters and members in all 50 states.


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