Wilma Lamug, 54, and Elnora Cayme, 57, are two of the brave Filipino American workers who came forward to file employment discrimination complaints against Delano Regional Medical Center. In 2006, they were both called in to a mandatory meeting for only Filipino employees at the hospital. During the meeting, the president of the hospital reprimanded those Filipino employees about violating the hospital’s English-only policy by speaking Tagalog and other Filipino languages.
“After the meeting, things got worse at the hospital and we Filipino employees felt harassed by our supervisors and co-workers. At least once or twice a day, a supervisor or co-workers approached me and said, ‘English only!’ while I was talking with my Filipino co-workers in the hallways and even in the break room,” recalled Elnora.
“DRMC’s actions made us feel embarrassed, isolated, and unvalued as employees. Many of us, including myself, had worked hard for DRMC for ten or twenty years. Despite our loyalty and years of service, we were shocked that DRMC singled out Filipino American workers and blatantly discriminated against us,” said Wilma. “I filed a complaint with the EEOC in 2006 because of the constant harassment. I felt that this treatment needed to stop because everyone deserves fair, equal, respectful, dignified and humane treatment.”
Elnora and Wilma are still active in their fight for justice against DRMC.
Read the case study here.