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Toyota dealership sued for discriminatory actions

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According to an article in The Oakland Tribune, a car dealership in the area was recently sued by former employees who allege it allowed discriminatory actions to take place.

The lawsuit was filed on behalf of the workers by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which claims employees at the Toyota dealership in Fremont harassed four Afghan-American salesman and let an Afghan-American manager go when he defended the workers.

The complaint alleges the dealership's general manager began using derogatory terms when referencing the workers beginning in October 2007, and even started to threaten them, which led to their resignation.

"My family fled Afghanistan because of the terrorism, dictatorship and lack of freedom there," former salesman Mohammad Sawary said in a statement. "Now in America, this man lashes out at us in front of all of our co-workers, calling us 'terrorists' and proclaiming himself 'dictator' here at Fremont Toyota."

Officials at the dealership declined to comment on the lawsuit.

The case highlights the importance of companies avoiding discrimination at all costs, as any negatively perceived comments or actions may result in expensive professional liability lawsuits and potentially damaged reputations.

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