A former Whole Foods meat cutter has sued the company for $15 million alleging he was fired in retaliation for filing a complaint that claimed the store was not following hygienic practices.
Angel Figueroa, 44, said in the lawsuit that he told Whole Foods management about staff not following health guidelines, the Connecticut Post stated. He was reportedly fired from the Westport, Connecticut, store one day after taking his complaint to the Westport-Weston Health Department.
“Instead of doing the right thing and taking the tainted products off the shelves, they choose to retaliate against an innocent employee,” Figueroa’s lawyer, Thomas Thornberry, was quoted by the Connecticut Post.
Health officials confirmed in a related Associated Press report that they inspected the Westport location because of Figueroa’s complaint and found no violations.
Company spokesman Michael Sinatra was quoted by the AP, saying Whole Foods “vehemently denies the allegations.”
Figueroa, hired as a meat cutter by Whole Foods in January 2015, claimed in the lawsuit that he saw meat with signs of being spoiled put out for sale, the Connecticut Post added.
“The plaintiff advised his immediate supervisor of the health code violations however, the plaintiff was advised to stop complaining and do as he was told, and continue with the unacceptable practices,” the lawsuit was quoted by the Connecticut Post.