Lawsuit: Bias against 'fat, black or ugly' at Panera franchise

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From Post-Gazette: A Panera Bread franchisee had a policy of keeping “fat, black or ugly” people off of the cash registers and out of management positions, according to a lawsuit filed in federal court today that seeks class action status.

The lawsuit by Guy M. Vines, 21, of Castle Shannon, claims that Panera franchisee Covelli Enterprises discouraged managers from hiring African Americans, and then relegated them to menial, back-of-the-shop roles.

It follows a lawsuit filed in November by a former Panera Bread manager who said he was fired under pretenses after he objected to such policies. Both Mr. Vines and the former manager are represented by attorney Sam Cordes.

“Here there was a policy that we don’t promote, nor do we allow people that are black, fat or ugly to work up in the front of our store,” said Mr. Cordes today. “If you’re black, we don’t allow you to work in the front, and we don’t promote you into management.???

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