Florida nurses say they were threatened to be fired for speaking Spanish

US & World

HAINES CITY, Fla. (WFLA) – A group of Florida nurses said they were threatened with their jobs, if they did not stop speaking Spanish at work.

The seven nurses said they work at the Health Department clinic in Haines City. They said they speak English with English-speaking patients and staff, but they speak Spanish with each other.

“I don’t feel comfortable. I feel like if I speak Spanish they’re watching me, they’re gonna fire me, they’re gonna do something because I’m speaking my language,” one nurse said. And it’s hard because I practically speak Spanish all day with the patients. The majority of the patients that come through the clinic speak Spanish, they don’t speak English. That’s why I was hired.”

The equal employment opportunity commission states it’s illegal to require an employee to speak only English, except when it’s part of the company’s operations.

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