Trump resort worker: No regrets speaking out about abuse
NEW YORK — A Guatemalan living in the U.S. illegally who says she faced abusive working conditions as a maid at Donald Trump’s New Jersey golf club doesn’t regret speaking out, even though she might lose her job and be deported.
Victorina Morales told The Associated Press in an interview Friday that she can’t go back to Guatemala because her family has received death threats, but that she had to stand up for other workers without legal documents at the club who have been ridiculed by a supervisor as “donkeys” and “dogs.”
“We need to come out and defend ourselves,” said 47-year-old Morales, brushing away tears. “I had enough with suffering.”
Morales, who said she has not been told definitively that she’s been fired, said that at least a dozen other workers at the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster did not have legal documentation.
Morales and another cleaning woman at the club, Sandra Diaz, said that they used phony Social Security and permanent residency documents to get hired, their supervisors knew it and that many employees there also lack legal documents. They both said they worked at Trump’s house at the club cleaning his clothes and making his bed and were angered by his remarks describing immigrants in the U.S. illegally as violent.
They said his comments may have encouraged what they describe as rampant verbal abuse at the resort.
“The president says that in the places he owns he does not hire any undocumented workers . ... It is a lie,” said Diaz, 46, a native of Costa Rica who worked at the club in 2010 to 2013.
The two women’s account was first reported by The New York Times on Thursday. The Times subsequently reported that two other immigrants who worked at the club came forward Friday to say that they lived illegally in the U.S. when they hired.
The Trump Organization said in emailed statement that it has strict hiring practices and that any workers with false papers will be terminated. A spokesman for the White House did not respond to an emailed request for comment.
Morales said that a supervisor at the club helped her get phony working papers. She said another supervisor pushed her against a wall three times, told her to stop speaking Spanish and threatened her with deportation if she complained.