A bagel baker at a BP Connect store will proceed with an HIV-discrimination and wrongful-firing suit even though he admitted his firing was justified.
The baker learned one night that his car was stranded on the Grand Central Parkway. He took $30 from the cash register, left a note and abandoned work, ruining the bagels.
His goose might have been cooked, but the baker threw in an extra ingredient: instances of fellow employees committing similar violations without the bakery firing them. The judge dismissed the baker’s hostile environment claim, ruling it was based on hearsay, but allowed the discrimination and wrongful-firing claims to proceed.
Bottom line: Fairness is essential in discrimination cases, but it also must be uniform. It’s up to the bakery now to show it handed out equal portions of discipline to rule-breakers.
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