In Minnesota, an employer does not have to have a reason to fire someone because it is an “at will” state. However, there remain some factors for which an employer cannot fire someone; otherwise, it is considered wrongful termination.
Wrongful termination typically occurs due to a whistleblower situation, wrongful discharge or discrimination, according to the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry. The law protects workers from any workplace discrimination, including being fired, due to certain things, including gender, disability, race, sexual orientation, marital status and national origin. Those who are unsure the reason behind termination have the right to request a truthful reason for the firing, as long as it is requested in writing within 15 working days. This might provide additional information on whether there was wrongful termination because of the country in which a person was born.
According to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the definition of discrimination based on national origin is when a person is treated differently due to his or her nation of origin. There are laws in place that make it illegal to ask for documentation regarding immigration status beyond using approved forms such as the Department of Homeland Security Form I-9, which verifies employment eligibility. Businesses are also unable to only hire permanent residents or U.S. citizens, other than companies exempt due to government contracts or other regulations and laws.
A person of any ethnicity or place of birth is protected from discrimination. This means it is illegal to fire someone due to their ethnicity or because they were born somewhere else. Along with shielding against termination, the anti-discrimination laws also prohibit harassment, pay differences and other aspects of employment.
In addition to protecting those born elsewhere, it also covers those who might seem to be a certain ethnicity but are not. These laws also safeguard those who have an accent, are U.S. citizens of any ethnicity or have a spouse from another country.