US Justice dept sues SpaceX, alleges discrimination against refugees in hiring process
The lawsuit claimed that SpaceX, from September 2018 to May 2022, aircraft had discouraged asylees and refugees from applying and refused to hire or consider them because of their citizenship.
WASHINGTON: The United States Justice Department has filed a lawsuit against Tesla Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk's Space X for allegedly discriminating in hiring the people, CNN reported.
The lawsuit claimed that SpaceX, from September 2018 to May 2022, aircraft had discouraged the asylees and refugees from applying and refused to hire or consider them because of their citizenship. This falls under the violation of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA),” according to an August 24 DOJ news release.
It further claimed that SpaceX, in its job listings, has posted that only green card holders and United States citizens could work at the company because of federal export control laws.
As per CNN, there are specific laws in the US— such as the International Traffic in Arms Regulations — that apply to companies manufacturing spacecraft and rockets and limit foreign nationals from accessing key information about the vehicles for national security reasons.
But the new lawsuit states that regulations such as ITAR do not prevent SpaceX from hiring refugees, whose “permission to live and work in the United States does not expire, and they stand on equal footing with US citizens,” according to the DOJ.
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“Our investigation found that SpaceX failed to fairly consider or hire asylees and refugees because of their citizenship status and imposed what amounted to a ban on their hire regardless of their qualification, in violation of federal law,” said Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division in a statement.
Clarke added that the DOJ’s investigation found recruiters at the company “actively discouraged asylees and refugees from seeking work opportunities at the company.”
The suit also alleges that SpaceX “failed to fairly consider” applications submitted to the company by refugees, according to CNN.
The Justice Department first notified SpaceX about its investigation on June 8, 2020, according to the complaint. It alleges in the lawsuit that SpaceX “failed to provide documents” related to the inquiry, and a judge denied the company’s attempt to revoke a subpoena on December 1, 2020. SpaceX eventually complied with the request for documents in August 2021, according to legal documents.