Chipotle just can't stay out of the news. After revamping its food-safety procedures and then changing them back again, the chain was still hit with another episode of norovirus. And now a former employee is suing the company—not for any foodborne illnesses, though. No, she has sued for wrongful termination, sexual harassment, assault, retaliation, and discrimination.
According to NBC San Diego, Ariana Castaneda is seeking unspecified damages for lost wages, benefits, and medical pay after she was wrongfully terminated and harassed by four managers at Chipotle's Woodland Hills, CA location.
According to court documents, Castaneda worked at the Tex-Mex restaurant from December 2013 until she was fired on February 10, 2016. She was a lead kitchen worker and alleges that her managers sexually harassed her and also used security cameras to spy on female customers they found attractive.
In the suit, which was filed with the state of California's Superior Court on March 16, Castaneda states that "all four managers created a sexually charged atmosphere directed at female employees and customers." She also alleges that her black uniform shirt was purposely ordered several sizes too small and that when she asked for a larger size, was asked by a manager: "Is it because your tits are too big?" After receiving a second shirt that was still too small, she claims, the manager again said, "It doesn't fit because your boobs are too big, huh?"
What's more, the lawsuit states that a manager would try to forcibly hug Castaneda and would regularly touch her under her shirt on her back, waist, and stomach after putting his hands on ice or other cold surfaces. It also alleges that managers made inappropriate remarks about the breasts of another female former employee and used derogatory and/or misogynistic language ("bitches," "these f*cking women," and "big boob [employee's name]") directed at both female employees and customers.
When asked for comment by NBC, a Chipotle spokesman said that as a matter of policy, the company does not comment on pending legal action.
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