Romanian court rules company discriminated against Jewish employee

A judge in Romania awarded 5,500 euros in damages to a Jewish man who sued his employer for not giving the claimant time off on Passover and humiliating him because of his ethnicity.

Bernard Ciurariu won his workplace discrimination against NTT Data Romania last month in the city of Iasi, the news site Info Crestin reported.

The claimant was “punished because he did not go to work during the Jewish Passover, although the law affords him days off on that holiday,” the judge said, according to the report.

This and other forms of discrimination began against Ciurariu after the death of his father last year. His employers learned that he was Jewish because his father received a Jewish funeral. From then on, he was excluded from projects relevant to his work and sidelined at the workplace, he complained.

In the dispute over the workdays, the company offered Ciurariu personal days off, which he declined because Passover is recognised as an official holiday for Jews in Romania. The firm withheld payment for those days and put Ciurariu on notice, warning him during a meeting in front of multiple colleagues that he would be fired if he again took time off without approval.

Ciurariu sued the firm, the Romanian subsidiary of a Japanese systems integration giant, and won the case in July. The Iasi court rejected the company’s appeal.

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