Legal Archives - Green Market Report

Debra BorchardtSeptember 26, 2022
Rise.jpg?fit=880%2C586&ssl=1

4min4020

Green Thumb Industries Inc. (OTC: GTBIF) was accused of sex and age discrimination by a former employee that worked in a Rise dispensary in Pennsylvania. Carrie Baker filed the complaint on September 22, 2022, alleging that she was “forced out” for not fitting with the corporate culture, which was described to her as young, single men. Baker is in her mid-fifties and says she was passed over for a shift supervisor role given to a substantially younger male co-worker.

The issue dates back to 2018 when Baker filed a complaint against GTI with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission (PHRC) alleging both age- and sex-based discrimination in connection with a promotion that had been unfairly awarded to a less qualified, substantially younger male co-worker.

According to the complaint, Baker filed a complaint with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission and once GTI found out, Baker, who says she had never received a disciplinary write-up in her life, began to receive unfair, unfounded, and disproportionate disciplinary actions. She complains that GTI harassed her so much after she filed her complaint with PHRC that she ended up quitting in June 2019. She says she was replaced by a younger employee. Baker went on to file a complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission on or about February 11, 2020.

EEOC Closes Investigation

The complaint states that on or about June 27, 2022, the EEOC closed its investigation into both the PHRC Complaint and EEOC Charge—expressly noting that it was not making a determination as to the claims raised by Baker—and issued Baker her Notice of Suit Rights.

Culture Clash

Baker said she had originally applied for an Assistant Manager job but was hired as a Patient Care Specialist, which paid less. She also accuses GTI of making diversity hires in order to get licenses in the state, but then pushed out some of those hires. Specifically naming Nzinga Morris (BIPOC); Kenita Honesty (BIPOC); Kathleen Newcomer (age 60+); and Marica McCarroll (age 50+) in her complaint.

She claims that store manager Tel White told her, “GTI was only looking to hire people like him, who were able to “pick up and leave” on a moment’s notice, if necessary.” She went on to complain that she performed the role of assistant store manager without the title and despite being turned down for the job. She also stated that a new role of Shift Supervisor was created and her younger male co-worker got that job. Baker says she complained to GTI’s human resources and also tried applying for higher positions at other Rise locations. She says she received good employee reviews, but once she filed the PHRC complaint, she was classified as needing improvement.

According to the complaint, GTI complained that Baker was searching for other employment during company time and had made negative remarks about management and her pay.

Baker says she is now working at the Pennsylvania Department of Health’s medical marijuana division.

GTI has 77 open and operating retail stores in 15 states. Green Thumb employs approximately 4,000 people. The company was named to Crain’s Chicago Business Fast 50 list in 2021 and 2022 and a Best Workplace by MG Retailer magazine in 2018, 2019, and 2021. The company has been requested to comment on the complaint.


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