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Pittsburgh Panera manager: I was fired for refusing racism

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Firing,Human Resources

A former manager at a Pittsburgh-area Panera Bread shop is suing the chain, claiming he was fired in retaliation for refusing to implement his boss’s racist directive.

Scott Donatelli claims his district manager told him not to station black men at the store’s cash registers, re­placing them with “pretty young girls.” Donatelli says the manager told him, “It’s what the owner wants and it’s what the customers want.”

Donatelli’s complaint also alleges the manager said he didn’t want black employees working where customers could see them.

Panera denied it issued any race-based directive. Instead, it said Donatelli was fired because he had exhausted his FMLA leave and was still unable to perform his job. When Donatelli heard that, he added an FMLA claim to his retaliation lawsuit. Barring a settlement, the case will go to trial.

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