LOS ANGELES (CNS) - A former sales associate at Ross Dress for Less Inc. is suing the clothing store chain, alleging she was repeatedly called “stupid,'' “worthless'' and a “dog'' by co-workers because of her limited English-speaking proficiency and ultimately fired in retaliation when she complained about her treatment.
Ines Angel Lopez's Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit allegations include natural origin harassment and discrimination, retaliation, assault and battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress. The suit filed Tuesday seeks unspecified damages.
A Ross representative did not immediately reply to a request for comment.
Lopez was hired in February 2018 as a sales associate and was a “hard-working and dedicated employee,'' the suit states. The Mexican national's primary language is Spanish and she does not speak English proficiently, according to the suit, which does not identify the store location where she worked.
While at Ross, Lopez alleges she “incurred a wrath of abuse, harassment, violence and retaliation'' from five co-workers. The quintet regularly “mocked, bullied, intimidated, ridiculed, put down, insulted and harassed'' Lopez because she did not speak English well, according to her suit.
Some of the co-workers regularly called Lopez “stupid,'' “worthless,'' and a “dog'' because of her language deficiencies, the suit states. Some of them also kicked and punched Lopez, pulled her hair, threw clothing at her, pushed boxes against her and shoved clothing racks at her, the suit alleges.
Ross management knew what Lopez's co-workers allegedly were doing to her, but did nothing to stop their behavior even though the plaintiff complained for nearly a year beginning in March 2019, according to the suit.
Ross fired Lopez on Feb. 19 and she believes she lost her job for complaining about how her co-workers were treating her, according to her court papers.
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