Would You Like Flies With That?

If there was ever a case that shows the importance of laws protecting whistleblowers, this might be it.

Last week Jim Garrity filed a powerful whistleblower lawsuit against a fast-food restaurant franchisee for firing our client after she reported an infestation of flies and fly larvae that she believed jeopardized food safety.  The evidence includes video of fly larvae, commonly referred to as maggots, on surfaces inside the site.  The location is not a company-owned store; rather, it is operated by a private company that licenses the right to sell food and drinks under the Burger King name.

At the time of our client’s firing, she was employed as a shift manager.  Her lawsuit alleges that during one of her shifts, she observed maggots “. . . crawling on the counters, floors, near the drink machine, and falling out of the ceiling. Moreover, Plaintiff witnessed flies in the kitchen and ceilings, and rats near the soda machine.” It alleges that she closed the location on at least two separate occasions after determining that the infestation had not been eliminated. Following her objections to management, she was suspended and, in short order, fired.  Prior to her firing, she called ECOLAB, a company that specializes in pest management at quick-service food restaurants, and also spoke to managers, but the company apparently decided it had had enough.

Whistleblowers who suffer retaliation after speaking out have powerful remedies.  In this case Jim Garrity is seeking lost wages, compensation for the client’s harassment, and reinstatement of her job.  Jury awards in cases like this are often very large, and Jim is pursuing this aggressively, not only for our client but also for the public, whose interest in safe, healthy food overrides any conceivable concern of the restaurant operators.

Have you blown the whistle on your employer’s practices?  Are you considering doing so but want to know your rights?  Call us at 800-663-7999 for a free, confidential consultation.  All cases are handled on a contingency basis, meaning that if we take your case, you owe us nothing unless we recover for you.





Categories: Retaliation, Whistleblowers

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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