A suit filed against a western Colorado hotel claims the owners fired all white workers in its laundry and housekeeping departments because they were perceived to be lazier than Hispanic employees. The affected employees turned to the EEOC which seeks their reinstatement and back pay. According to the lawsuit, the owners of the two-year old Hampton Inn franchise told the general manager “to hire more qualified maids, and that they preferred maids to be Hispanic because in their opinion Hispanics worked harder.” One of the fired employees claims she was told she was being terminated because non-Hispanic workers such as herself were “lazy.”

The EEOC believes the hotel operators “played to the stereotype of Hispanic workers — that they’re going to work harder and they’re not going to complain.” This brings up the dichotomy of ugly racial stereotypes faced by Hispanics: originally pegged as being lazy, amoral and violent (and that’s just in one Looney Tunes cartoon) they are also assumed to want the jobs no one else will do and do them diligently without complaint (more cartoons). Astonishingly, some clueless writers were surprised the latter stereotype exists. Either way, its completely unacceptable to make hiring decisions based on broad racial stereotypes, unless of course it’s the well-established maxim that Caucasians are just too damn tall.

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