Search Site

Whistleblower Claim Arises from Food Safety Concerns at High School

A recent whistleblower lawsuit against the David Douglas School District near Portland, Oregon alleges that its high school was not engaging in proper food safety practices. The suit was filed by two of the district’s food service workers and a special education assistant at the school.

According to the plaintiffs, officials in the school district did nothing after the complainants brought up their concerns about the increasingly erratic behavior and worsening health of the school’s head cook. The workers also allege the head cook retaliated against them for talking about their concerns with management. When they reported this retaliation to administrators, including the district superintendent, they reportedly did not get a response. They are now seeking $250,000 in noneconomic damages and attorney’s fees.

Ongoing issues in the kitchen

The lawsuit alleges the retaliation initially began after a meeting of the kitchen staff in April 2012. At the meeting, the workers say they told the district’s nutritionist and a representative of their union about their concerns surrounding the worsening condition of the head cook and the effect her condition was having on the safety of the school’s food. They said the head cook regularly took long breaks, complained of physical pain and would not work full days because she was too exhausted.

Additionally, she would allegedly forget how long and at what temperature food had been cooking, would order too many ingredients (or forget to order them at all), would fail to notice certain health violations in food storage and preparation and would regularly make demeaning, inflammatory comments to kitchen staff members. Plaintiffs said they were threatened with being reassigned to a different post if they continued to raise any issues.

If your organization needs to investigate a whistleblower claim, seek legal representation from the experienced Dallas attorneys at Whistleblower Law for Managers right away.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Awards & Honors
Our Office
  • Dallas Office
    4514 Cole Ave
    Dallas, Texas 75205
    Phone: 214-306-8045
    Fax: 469-729-9926
As Seen In
In his new book, "Standing Up to China: How a Whistleblower Risked Everything for His Country," former client & Author, Ashley Yablon, quotes Attorney Steve Kardell about Whistelblower Law.
  • "Steve Kardell was terrific in representing me in some very adversarial discussions with Citigroup and also later represented me in my testimony before the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission."  -Richard Bowen, Citigroup Whistleblower

  • "Incredible knowledge of employee related concerns and equally brilliant knowledge of health care regulations, standards of practice. I would recommend this firm to anyone."  -V.B.

  • "Reaching out to Steve Kardell was the best decision I made. His ability to provide immediate insight and direction was very powerful, and a huge relief during a very stressful time period. For anyone struggling with a whistleblower situation, I would highly recommend at least speaking with Steve. After a 10 minute call with him, I had a better understanding of what I was dealing with. Even better, he gave me some immediate hope. In the end Steve did a better job than I thought was possible. Steve was able to get in contact with people in my organization, that I didn’t have access to. Because of his years of experience, he already has contacts in many organizations in Dallas. The entire situation was handled peacefully. I was impressed by his ability to “keep the peace”–rather than creating a battle with the organization. The reason I didn’t reach out to a lawyer initially, was because I thought it would mean an immediate end to any hope of a positive relationship with the company. Steve was able to address my concerns, and in the end I was able to continue to work for them."  -KS

  • "Never thought my career would end like it did after 30 years of service. I was part of the first round of the so called reduction of force. I asked myself how can I be part of this with 30 years of seniority. How did they pick these 90 plus employees? Now, the culture of this organization made you question every decision they made. It wasn’t what you knew it’s was a culture of who you know. Nonetheless, I did not accept their severance package. I immediately starting looking for an attorney who would take on my case. After the initial call to Steve I had hope again. He was open and honest about everything and reassured me he would do his best for me, and he did. I had an awesome outcome. Thanks Steve you’re the best."  -S.S.