NEW YORK- A lawsuit alleging that the city’s Plaza Hotel harassed Muslim and Arab-American employees after the 2001 terrorist attacks has been settled with the hotel’s management agreeing to pay $525,000 (euro426,000) to a dozen workers and to offer additional anti-discrimination training to its staff. The lawsuit was filed in Manhattan federal court in September 2003 by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against the Plaza and Fairmont Hotel Management LP. Since then the Plaza has been sold to Elad Properties, which has closed the hotel for remodeling and plans to reopen it in the fall of 2006 as a condominium building and smaller hotel.
The lawsuit alleged that managers at the Plaza called Arab-American employees terrorists after the Sept. 11 attacks, referring to them as ”Osama” or ”dumb Muslim.” ”The EEOC takes very seriously allegations of harassment based on religion and/or national origin,” said Sunu Chandy, an EEOC senior trial attorney. ”We are proud of these brave employees who stepped forward to the EEOC to report this harassment.” (MORE)