Chipotle, the fast-food restaurant that will probably kill Jezebel editor Jia Tolentino (RIP Jia), is having a very bad year. First it poisoned hundreds of unsuspecting lovers of cool, casual food with E. coli and now it’s facing a gender discrimination lawsuit.
The Cincinnati Enquirer reports that three former female managers have filed a discrimination suit against the chain in federal court. The lawsuit claims that the three women were routinely discriminated against by a male supervisor despite high evaluations. According to the lawsuit, Herman Mobbs, the former Cincinnati area manager told one of the plaintiffs that “there sure are a lot of overweight women working here.” On another occasion, he told one of the women, “you’re too emotional.”
“Mobbs was a sexist,” the plaintiffs’ attorney told the Enquirer.
The women, who allege that they were ultimately fired because of their gender, also assert that the company violated the Family and Medical Leave Act. Elizabeth Rogers, one of the women bringing the lawsuit, claims that she was fired in retaliation for taking maternity leave after giving birth to twins. One of her twins died during labor, the other remained in the hospital for months.
Chipotle says, however, that the women were just really bad at their jobs, as women are. The Enquirer reports:
A Chipotle lawyer, Kate Mowry, said Chipotle terminated the women’s employment based on work performance, not their sex. She added that Mobbs hired and fired both male and female employees.
After citing a slew of negative evaluations written namely by Mobbs against the plaintiffs, Mowry said, “These women were terminated because they did not meet the basic standards of restaurant management.”
The plaintiffs, however, claim that they received glowing reviews from supervisors. Tina Reynolds said that despite an “above expectations” review in September 2011—one that came with a cash bonus—she was fired in October and replaced by a male manager. Stephanie Ochoa, the third plaintiff, was also replaced by a male manager.
The trial, which began on Monday, is expected to last two weeks. The Enquirer notes that job discrimination cases do not generally fare well in court, on average on 15 percent of such cases are won by the plaintiff.
Moral of the story: don’t eat at Chipotle. [Ed. note: GODDAMMIT]
Image via AP.