In a recent Brooklyn federal lawsuit, captioned Fischer v. WW Bakers LLC (EDNY 16-5103), plaintiff (a baker) asserts, inter alia, that defendant violated New York’s general whistleblower law, NY Labor Law 740, after he advised his employer about bug-infested flour.
That statute, inter alia, provides:
An employer shall not take any retaliatory personnel action against an employee because such employee does any of the following:
(a) discloses, or threatens to disclose to a supervisor or to a public body an activity, policy or practice of the employer that is in violation of law, rule or regulation which violation creates and presents a substantial and specific danger to the public health or safety, or which constitutes health care fraud;
(b) provides information to, or testifies before, any public body conducting an investigation, hearing or inquiry into any such violation of a law, rule or regulation by such employer; or
(c) objects to, or refuses to participate in any such activity, policy or practice in violation of a law, rule or regulation.
– See more at: http://codes.findlaw.com/ny/labor-law/lab-sect-740.html#sthash.GQAzHwS5.dpuf
From the complaint:
1. Plaintiff master baker, who was employed by defendant commercial bakery as its
operational manager, complains pursuant to N.Y. Labor Law § 740 (the “Whistleblower Law”)
that he was discharged from employment for disclosing to his supervisor an activity, policy or
practice of the employer that is in violation of law, rule or regulation that created and presented a
substantial and specific danger to the public health or safety.
2. Mr. Fischer discovered an insect infestation in BNY’s flour silo. He provided a
photograph of the infestation to the owners of BNY, along with a statement that he intended to
dispose of the flour. The owner of BNY directed Mr. Fischer to use the tainted flour for multigrain
bread (presumably because the infestation would pass unnoticed if concealed in crunchy
bread). Plaintiff refused to implement this unlawful directive. Defendant responded by
terminating plaintiff’s employment.
The complaint also seeks to recoup relocation expenses incurred by plaintiff (in moving his family from California to New York) that defendant allegedly promised.