Food-Maker Accused of Firing Injured Employees

The lawsuit also claims the company deliberately hires and promotes predominantly Mexican-Americans.

A well-known frozen foods manufacturer is being iced out by a group of former workers who recently filed a lawsuit over workplace expectations and policies.

Petaluma, California-based Amy’s Kitchen – makers of organic and vegetarian prepared foods – may be headed to court after four former employees of a Medford, Oregon plant say “the company systematically put workers at risk through overwork and unsafe conditions and also discriminated against non-Latino employees.”

According to the news source Petaluma 360, the lawsuit claims Amy’s deliberately hires and promotes predominantly Mexican-Americans because of their reputation for being hard workers. The suit also says that supervisors gave instructions in Spanish, and a worker says he was retaliated against for not understanding.

The suit also goes on to cite some safety issues, accusing the company of working employees so hard that they were skipping breaks and working without adequate safety protocols. There are also allegations of the widespread practice of firing injured employees.

The attorney who filed the suit calls Amy’s a victim of its own success and suggests the company is running too hard and too fast in an attempt to keep up with the rapidly growing demand for its products.

Amy’s only comment was to say that the suit was without merit, telling Petaluma 360 that it won’t further address pending litigation.
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