Turkish workers sue IPI for discrimination

Imperial Pacific International’s (IPI) gaming licence has been suspended indefinitely.
Imperial Pacific International’s (IPI) gaming licence has been suspended indefinitely.

The Turkish construction workers previously sued IPI for not paying them the federal minimum wage.

Northern Mariana Islands.- Imperial Pacific International’s (IPI) is facing another lawsuit with three former workers demanding an unspecified amount of damages and a jury trial after accusing the company of discrimination. The plaintiffs, Özcan Genç, Hasan Gökçe, and Süleyman Köş, claim through attorney Richard Miller that IPI committed discrimination due to their nationality.

The three Turkish workers filed discrimination complaints with the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which issued a Notice of Right to Prosecute in October.

According to the lawsuit, in the same period that IPI hired the plaintiffs to work at the Garapan Palace casino, IPI also hired other construction workers, including Taiwanese workers under the H-2B visa programme. The lawsuit alleges that the Taiwanese workers had the same or similar level of skills, qualifications and experience as the plaintiffs in terms of the type of work they perform but received significantly higher wages, in some cases nearly twice as much.

According to the lawsuit, IPI terminated the Turkish workers’ positions in December 2020. Chief Justice Ramona Manglona granted has granted the plaintiffs’ petition for a preliminary Fair Labor Standards Act certification of collective action against IPI and its parent company IPI Holdings, Ltd.

Last year, Imperial Pacific International’s (IPI) gaming licence was suspended indefinitely as the operator failed to comply with regulatory orders. The company is facing several lawsuits for breach of contract and unpaid fees, the latest being from Kan Pacific.

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