Lawsuit Filed Against General Mills For Allegedly Overlooking Racism For Decades

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Mariane Angela Entertainment And News Reporter
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A federal class-action lawsuit has been filed against General Mills by eight current and former employees at the company’s Covington, Georgia plant, alleging decades-long racial discrimination, CBS News reported Wednesday.

The lawsuit, lodged in the Northern District of Georgia in Atlanta, accuses the company of violating federal civil rights laws and state and federal racketeering laws, according to CBS News. The plaintiffs claim White supervisors at the facility allegedly engaged in numerous racist acts intended to punish and intimidate Black employees.

These allegations include a 1993 incident where a noose was reportedly left on a Black employee’s desk and another incident involving racial slurs written on work forms. Furthermore, the lawsuit details that during the 1990s White employees purportedly used racial slurs openly and without fear of repercussions from management, CBS News stated. The lawsuit criticizes senior managers at General Mills for their failure to reprimand supervisors for their alleged racist behavior.

It also claims the human resources department routinely disclosed the identities of Black complainants to their White supervisors, leading to subsequent retaliation against these employees, the outlet reported. General Mills, which opened the Covington plant in 1988 — a facility known for producing popular cereals like Chex, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Cocoa Puffs and Trix — declined to comment specifically on the ongoing litigation. (RELATED: ‘Squad’ Member Asks Janet Yellen If ‘Racism’ Threatens US Financial System)

However, the company emphasized its commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion. “General Mills has a long-standing and ongoing commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion and we do not tolerate discrimination of any kind,” the company said in a statement, CBS News reported.

This lawsuit adds to a growing list of cases highlighting alleged racial discrimination in various workplaces across the country, according to CBS News. Recent legal actions, such as a $11.2 million settlement with fitness chain Equinox and a $3.2 million jury award to a former Tesla factory worker, point out the potential legal and financial repercussions of failing to address racial discrimination effectively.