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Archive for Monday, December 17, 2012

Former employee sues Lawrence restaurant for discrimination

December 17, 2012

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Ingredient lawsuit ( .PDF )

A former employee of Ingredient, 947 Massachusetts St., filed a lawsuit against the restaurant last week in federal court, alleging civil rights violations.

Rueben Madrigal, employed at the restaurant until August, says he was "harassed by the co-owner, managers and my co-workers because of my disability and nation origin," according to court documents.

Madrigal, who in the court documents says he suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder, alleges that employees would continually come up behind him and make loud noises, startling him. Madrigal says that he informed management but that no action was taken.

Madrigal is seeking $75,000 in damages.

In the lawsuit, Madrigal states that he filed a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which issued him a letter of "no finding."

Ingredient owner Nick Wysong was initially not aware of the lawsuit.

"I'm sad to read that," said Wysong after being provided a copy of the lawsuit by the Journal-World.

Wysong said he was aware that Madrigal had filed complaints through other avenues, such as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, but that none of those complaints had shown any findings of civil rights violations.

Comments

HarmonKillabrew 1 year, 3 months ago

This is Karma. Nick is not a nice guy and he doesn't care about his employees.

1

happyrearviewmirror 1 year, 3 months ago

A lot of people in Lawrence are mindlessly aggressive. Ignorance scares people. These are not good people-readers who have been taught to respond to others as individuals. No, they have been brainwashed to follow a script and have never reflected enough to realize that are conveying their offensive, discriminatory sense of entitlement to the world: Approach others aggressively. Don't even bother to say "hi" or to gauge another's interest or willingness to interact. Barge right in there, country bumpkin. Act out your prejudiced assumptions immediately and mindlessly.

I can totally understand the loud, insensitive types who are a dime a dozen in Lawrence purposely frightening others.

0

verity 1 year, 3 months ago

When I was employed in Lawrence, one of my coworkers was bipolar and, even with medication, it was not well-controlled. Some of the fellow employees, who were way old enough to know better, would tease him and try to feed into his paranoia, thinking it was quite funny.

I don't know what happened in the situation in this article, but I do know that people, even adults who should know better, can be needlessly cruel to someone who has a problem.

2

MarcoPogo 1 year, 3 months ago

He's right - it does not take four months to order a vacuum. Case closed.

0

Gotland 1 year, 3 months ago

Is nation of origin a protected class?

0

thebigspoon 1 year, 3 months ago

Rueben, really??? Are you kidding?

Let's see: did you disclose your PTSD on your employment application? If not, then it's hard to see how you were harassed about it. Can you say "fraudulent application"?

I've been in several restaurant settings, both as patron and owner or operator, and I seem to remember loud noises as a constant reminder that people were at work and doing things with utensils, dishware, pots and pans, and all manner of other stuff, and I did not file a lawsuit seeking compensation for normal happenings.

This badgering of yours may have worked in the past, but, Rueben, I believe you've probably met your match in your trip to the big leagues of Federal Court. Maybe you should just attempt to have a normal job, be a competent employee, and learn that life is not a constant battle against you and your "race" or "economic status" or whatever "disability" you happen to suffer at the time.

0

neworleans 1 year, 3 months ago

A worthless employee; late for work; and his quality of work was 0.....a total bum...........

0

bearded_gnome 1 year, 3 months ago

Rueben Madrigal, employed at the restaurant until August, says he was "harassed by the co-owner, managers and my co-workers because of my disability and nation origin," according to court documents.

I think Rueben is asserting that PTSD was a preexisting condition. also, that he was harrassed for his PTSD.

PTSD is real, and though now we see it often in the news associated with vets, anybody can get PTSD. in fact the article cited above is in error.
in the classic definition of PTSD, if anyone experiences a most extreme trauma, he or she can then have mental disturbance symptoms we describe as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder; if these symptoms last for a lengthy period and disturb important functions of living.
PTSD is real, IDK if the suit is.

2

Steve Jacob 1 year, 3 months ago

Some people just can't handle high stress jobs, and working in a restaurant can be that way.

0

oneeye_wilbur 1 year, 3 months ago

Employed until August, when did he start? PTS now in the workplace? Thought it was from the military?

0

verity 1 year, 3 months ago

Not enough information here for any of us to make a reasoned decision.

And yet so many have already made up their minds.

7

Stacy Napier 1 year, 3 months ago

"And we all pay for it. Groundless, frivilous and costly litigation "

You are absolutely correct. You know who we all can blame. That's right this guy didn't right up or file the lawsuit by himself. Some Attorney did it. If we had half of the attorneys in this county we would all be better off.

I appoligize to the very very few good ones right now, but most hide under the auspice of trying to get justice or upholding the law, when all we really need is common sense and honesty.

0

password 1 year, 3 months ago

"employed at the restaurant until August"? so when did he actually start there?

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Noweigh 1 year, 3 months ago

rtwngr is right...."step in, make an offer to settle and cut a check to make it all go away." Very sad but very true. And we all pay for it. Groundless, frivilous and costly litigation and "settlements" that ultimately is passed along to the average Joe and Jane Consumer. Would be interesting to see a suit that asked for no monetary damages, just an apology if in fact wrong doing was done. Hopefully some of the smaller, local companies can afford to stand up to these kind of lawsuits, fight them in court and get decisions rendered in their favor. That might stop the "check" from being the only way "it all goes away:,

0

rtwngr 1 year, 3 months ago

I have a feeling the insurance company will step in, make an offer to settle, and cut a check to make it all go away. Based on what I am reading, he doesn't deserve a dime. He sounds like someone trying to bilk the system.

3

jhawkinsf 1 year, 3 months ago

Any person can sue any other person for any reason, real or imagined. And because it might cost almost as much to defend such a lawsuit, it may well be cheaper to just settle. Free money, get your free money.

2

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