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Former Volvo Employee Sues, Says Fired For Not Being Swedish

A former employee of Volvo Group North America is suing the truck company, saying that he was fired because he wasn’t Swedish.

Luke Diventi, a Romanian-born former employee of the heavy truck side of Volvo in North America, has filed a complaint of job discrimination, the Charlotte Observer reports.

According to the report, Diventi worked at Volvo Group HQ in Greensboro, NC, for seven years as a lead project manager. “The only suggestion for improvement was to become more Swedish in his interactions with coworkers,” the lawsuit states.

Diventi’s attorneys said in the complaint that Volvo gave preferential treatment to Swedish-born workers at the HQ. That included speaking Swedish in open meetings and business discussions. They also “reduced” social activities among non-Swedish employees, the suit states.

After Diventi complained, the complaint says, Volvo “escalated its efforts to impede his performance.”

That included denying a business trip request to Volvo in Sweden, which was instead offered to a Swedish employee the suit said. According to the suit, Diventi applied for a promotion shortly thereafter but was turned down. A Swedish employee got the job. Diventi told his manager he would be taking his complaint to upper management and was put on administrative leave the following day before being fired the next month, according to the report.

Diventi is claiming violations of the Civil Rights Act and is seeking damages of at least $25,000. The Observer reports that neither side immediately responded to requests for comment.

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