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Health Care Company Apologizes For 'No Haitians' Help-Wanted Ad In NY Pennysaver

NANUET, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) -- A Florida-based health care company is apologizing for a help-wanted advertisement posted in New York that called for "no Haitians."

Interim Healthcare Inc.'s ad for a female nursing position in West Haverstraw explicitly stated "No Haitians" would be considered for employment. The ad appeared in the Rockland Pennysaver on Oct. 15.

Florence Pierre-Pierre of the Haitian American Nurses Association in Rockland said she was shocked and outraged when she saw the ad.

"I couldn't believe that in this day and age that this is still going on," she told 1010 WINS' Al Jones.

"A lot of Haitians are nurses, and we arre proud of what we do, so for this to be happening, this is like unbelievable," she told CBS2's Hazel Sanchez.

Interim has issued an apology on its Facebook page Monday.

Company President Katherine McNally called the ad "totally unacceptable" and "offensive."

The company is taking the matter seriously and is conducting a comprehensive review of what occurred to guarantee it never happens again, McNally said.

October 18, 2015 We value the diversity of our patients and our employees. The ad in the Pennysaver for an LPN is...

Posted by Interim HealthCare on Monday, October 19, 2015

The ad was mistakenly published without proper editing protocol and has since been removed, Pennysaver said in a statement posted on its website Monday.

"We recognize the wording was highly offensive to our readers, executives as well as the employees of The Pennysaver and by no means does it reflect the opinions or feelings of the company," Pennysaver said. "Please accept our sincere apology and realize we regret any personal offense this has caused our readers, employees and the community we serve. We strive at The Pennysaver to publish fair and non-discriminatory content."

It's still unclear who exactly was responsible for placing the ad.

Pierre-Pierre said, "To me, the apology is not unacceptable."

New York state Sen. David Carlucci, D-Clarkstown, is calling on the New York state Attorney General, the Department of Labor and the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to investigate.

"It just reeks of racism and discrimination, and I believe laws were broken," Carlucci told 1010 WINS. "We need to hold the people responsible for this accountable."

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said the ad violates federal and state civil rights laws and has asked McNally to turn over the names of all staff responsible for hiring and creating and distributing ads for employment.

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