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Monday, 04 April 2016 12:24

NAACP protests Kroger firing Featured

Written by Ben R. Willias | Martinsville Bulletin
Ben R. Williams Ben R. Williams

The Martinsville-Henry County NAACP held a demonstration at Kroger in Martinsville on Monday to protest the firing of an African-American man employed at the grocery store for 25 years, according to NAACP President Naomi Hodge-Muse.

In addition to that incident, Hodge-Muse alleged that there had been other racially-motivated incidents at the grocery store.

According to a statement from Kroger Customer Communications, Kroger has investigated these complaints and found no instances of discrimination.

Hodge-Muse alleged that on Feb. 10, an African-American third-shift manager employed at Kroger for 25 years, had an altercation with a white employee working under him.

Two days later, she said, the third-shift manager was fired over what she describes as a "contrivance."

Hodge-Muse listed several other incidents of discrimination that allegedly occurred. Generally, Hodge-Muse said, when the NAACP is contacted regarding racial incidents in the workplace, she attempts to work with the company behind the scenes to achieve a resolution. In this case, she said, she felt that Kroger was uncooperative, and she felt she was left with little choice but to arrange the demonstration.

Hodge-Muse said that the NAACP plans to continue demonstrating on the sidewalk in front of Kroger each week until the third-shift manager is reinstated in his job and store management receives training to ensure that there is a civil working environment in the future.

"Everybody has a right to a civil working environment," she said. "Nobody should go to work with their stomach balled up in a knot and be discriminated against."

The third-shift manager could not be reached for comment before press time.

Store manager Ray Bragg directed all questions to Kroger Customer Communications.

Allison McGee with Kroger Customer Communications sent a statement to the Bulletin. That statement read: "Kroger has investigated the complaint regarding the dismissal of an associate at its store in Martinsville and determined that the dismissal was appropriate. Kroger also has investigated allegations regarding store management’s actions and found them not to be discriminatory.

Link to original article from The Martinsville Bulletin

Read 260 times Last modified on Sunday, 11 December 2016 12:34

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