costco wholesale storeCostco fired an employee for speaking Farsi, according to a recent lawsuit that claims racial discrimination and wrongful termination.

Plaintiff Paeez H. reportedly started working for Costco in May 2018 as an optical clerk.

During the course of her employment, Paeez reportedly worked “extremely hard” and fulfilled her duties of taking orders, making prescription glasses, and checking that customer prescriptions were correct.

Despite being a hard worker, Paeez says she was held to unreasonable standards by her supervisor.

Paeez claims that her manager would routinely yell at her for things that were not her fault or that she did not do. Additionally, the Costco lawsuit argues that Paeez was the only employee treated like this. Even though other employees allegedly sat around on their phones instead of doing their jobs, these workers were not yelled at like Paeez was.



To make matters worse, Paeez says she was discriminated against during her employment with Costco.

According to the Costco lawsuit, the manager told other employees “I hate Persians” – the group Paeez reportedly belongs to.

Furthermore, the manager reportedly yelled at Paeez when she would speak Farsi, the Persian language. In one instance, when Paeez was speaking Farsi with a customer, the manager allegedly came up to her and told her to “get up, get up. I don’t want you to speak Farsi.”

Paeez argues that she was unfairly punished for speaking Farsi despite the fact that other employees spoke non-English languages with customers. For example, her coworkers reportedly spoke Portuguese and Vietnamese with their customers with no consequences.

After experiencing this discrimination, the plaintiff says she complained to the store’s general manager. The Costco lawsuit claims that the three Costco employees had a meeting about the issue.



When asked about the alleged Farsi issue, the manager reportedly said that she didn’t want Paeez to speak Farsi because Persians “all speak good English so you don’t need to speak Farsi.” The general manager reportedly responded with “stop you can’t say that,” but simply told Paeez to “bear with her.”

Despite her attempts to bring the issue to management, the plaintiff was reportedly fired in August 2018 because she did not fit the “Costco culture.”

Paeez argues that she was routinely discriminated against for her race and that this discrimination motivated her termination. She also argues that management failed to stop the discrimination despite being aware of the issue.

“Defendants were aware of Costco’s employees’ actions in discriminating against Plaintiff based on her race,” the Costco lawsuit claims.

“Despite being aware of the discrimination, Defendants failed to conduct an adequate investigation in regards to said discrimination and retaliation, or to take any action whatsoever to eliminate and/or remedy that discrimination.”



The Costco discrimination lawsuit seeks several forms of relief including actual damages, general damages, special damages, consequential damages, incidental damages, and punitive damages.

Were you fired from a job due to racial discrimination? Share your experiences in the comment section below.

The plaintiff is represented by Abraham Mathew and Jacob George of Mathew & George.

The Costco Termination Lawsuit is Paeez H. v. Costco Wholesale, Case No. 30-2020-01121710-CU-WT-CJC, in the Superior Court of the State of California.

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1 Comment

  • Lisa James January 8, 2020

    I don’t believe this story not one bit!! She was probably a problematic employee. She probably spoke Farsi to members who did speak English talking about her coworkers.

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