There are jobs out there where a perfect command of the English language is a reasonable requirement. There are also a whole lot where it is not, but that doesn't stop racist and xenophobic people from guarding the gates to employment.
This story from Twitter user @staleboba about how her dad received an offensive email with a threat about his English has set off a firestorm on the Internet. No one is happy with how he was treated, especially since the rejection email wasn't exactly perfect:
Non-English speakers really have it hard bc my dad just got rejected from this job offer and the email literally stated “Let me tell you now, if you no speak English I will send you Home-“ Wtf.. + all of Bruce’s emails we’re also very unprofessional & passive aggressive pic.twitter.com/YDXNHVW7bH— wowie its emily (@staleboba) January 23, 2018
She later updated to say her dad wasn't destroyed by this interaction. He was just a bit taken aback.
It wasn't the rejection as much as the tone of the email that offended them both.
I understand that the job requires English but his email(s) could’ve been handled way more professionally. This email was gross, unnecessary and degrading.— wowie its emily (@staleboba) January 23, 2018
Or as she tweeted:
After her dad's story went viral, a lot of people reached out to say that this was textbook workplace discrimination and pretty illegal:
I don’t know you I’ve worked in a law firm and I just spoke with one of the attorneys specializing in work place discrimination - this is not okay. I’ll be calling this company today— Ocean (@ocean_breeeeeze) January 23, 2018
We have been in contact with their headquarter office and the business has been notified. Please message me if your dad wants to take legal action, the attorney I’ve reached out to is willing to take on your case pro bono.— Ocean (@ocean_breeeeeze) January 23, 2018
💝 tell your dad to keep his head up. What kind of work is he looking to do? My family and most of my friends live in Seattle and I can reach out to them to see if they know of anywhere hiring.— Ocean (@ocean_breeeeeze) January 23, 2018
man this hits so close to home. My dads also a Vietnamese immigrant and he’s struggling like crazy to find work too. Fuck Bruce Peterson, scumbag racist HR douche. I bet he’s the kind of ass that goes overseas and speaks loudly and slowly to everyone in English— Gogo Yubari (@povobougie) January 23, 2018
Immigrants are abused! I arrived in England with little English & was treated like i lacked intelligence & humanity. Mind u i spoke 2 other languages! Within 5 years of entering the country i got my degree in international relations. Still, did all kinds of menial jobs for years!— Zaynab (@Zaynabu) January 24, 2018
Her dad had been working as a truck driver for 13 years, and was recently laid off. He works on his English every day, but has obviously been a competent employee for years.
Thank you! He has been looking for jobs for the past two years. He got laid off from being an overnight truck driver for about 13 years— wowie its emily (@staleboba) January 23, 2018
People started calling the company to complain about Bruce Peterson. Some of them were calling the wrong company.
@Staleboba's dad was overwhelmed by the support:
And then they found out that Bruce Peterson had gotten his comeuppence: He'd reportedly been fired.
Many were saying they should push harder and turn it into a lawsuit, but the family didn't want to go that far. @Stableboba shared a message saying thank you and a pic of her dad's English study sheet.
Check up: Even though we appreciate all the encouragement to make it a law suit, my dad has forgiven and wants to move on. He says he doesn’t want to be confrontational, what happened has happened. Btw this is my dads notebook he keeps near his laptop, he teaches himself daily :) pic.twitter.com/0tWFl5H9Hx— wowie its emily (@staleboba) January 24, 2018
It also looks like this viral thread might help him find a job.
Wow that is absolutely horrible!! Is you dad still looking for a position?! I recruit for positions in the Redmond, WA area! I schedule interviews for manufacturing, assembly, warehouse, and production! Let me know and I can send my profesisonal contact info over!— becca 🌞 breezzi (@beccaendrizzi) January 23, 2018
Best of luck!!
This might be my favorite part of the thread!— Cali Pitchel Schmidt (@cali_schmidt) January 24, 2018
People helping each other is what America should be about.