English Only In The Workplace? Bad Idea

It’s very tempting for employers to mandate their employees speak only English during working hours.

It’s also – in most cases – very wrong.

The EEOC provides some examples where English-only would be justified by business necessity:

  • For communications with customers, co-workers, or supervisors who only speak English.

  • In emergencies or other situations in which workers must speak a common language to promote safety.

  • For cooperative work assignments in which the English-only rule is needed to promote efficiency.

  • To enable a supervisor who only speaks English to monitor the performance of an employee whose job duties require communication with co-workers or customers.

If you wish to mandate an English-only workplace, we strongly suggest you review the policy with an employment attorney prior to implementation.

It’s not worth it!

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