Former worker claims racism at Founders Brewing

Grand Rapids
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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — A former employee of Founders Brewing Company has filed a lawsuit against the brewery alleging racial discrimination.

Tracy Evans, who is African-American, said he worked at Founders in Grand Rapids and then the company’s Canal Street Brewing in Detroit for about four years.

In the 15-page suit filed in federal court in Detroit in August, Evans said he was watched more closely and disciplined more harshly than his white co-workers. He also said his co-workers used racial slurs toward him.

He went on to claim he was denied a promotion and eventually fired this year because of his race and in retaliation for complaining about the way he had been treated.

Evans is seeking more than $75,000 in lost wages, damages and attorney fees.

Founders has denied the allegations. Lawyers representing the brewery released the following statement:

“The allegations of unlawful conduct in Mr. Evans’ lawsuit are baseless. Founders is a company that is built on diversity and its culture is the result of a great mixture of people who treat each other with respect. Founders will vigorously defend itself against these claims and is confident that it will prevail.” 

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