Mrs. Fields’ Original Cookies Inc. (Mrs. Fields) recently settled with the Department of Justice (DOJ) to resolve a claim that Mrs. Fields’ Utah production and distribution center discriminated against work-authorized non-U.S. citizens when verifying their work authorization. The DOJ concluded that Mrs. Fields required lawful permanent residents to provide specific documentation issued by the Department of Homeland Security to prove their work authorization, but they did not impose this requirement on U.S. citizens.
The DOJ noted that all work-authorized individuals, regardless of citizenship status, have the right to choose which document to present from a range of valid documents to demonstrate their authorization to work in the United States.
Mrs. Fields is headquartered in Broomfield, Colorado and its brands produce, distribute, and sell specialty items, including cookies, brownies, and chocolates. The settlement resolves a claim that Mrs. Fields violated the antidiscrimination provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).
Under the settlement, Mrs. Fields will pay $26,400 in civil penalties to the United States and be subject to DOJ monitoring and reporting requirements. In addition, certain employees must attend training on the INA’s antidiscrimination provision.