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Paula Deen is an American celebrity chef, former cooking show host, restaurateur, author, actress and Emmy Award-winning television personality. Recently, Deen has suffered a tremendous fall out based on allegations of racism stemming from a controversy regarding Deen’s admission, during a deposition for a lawsuit, that she had used racial slurs.
The accusations against Deen stem from a lawsuit filed by a former manager of Deen’s restaurants in Savannah, Georgia. Lisa T. Jackson’s lawsuit alleges that Deen and her brother, Bubba Hier, committed numerous acts of violence, discrimination and racism that resulted in the end of Jackson’s five-year tenure at Deen’s Lady & Sons and Uncle Bubba’s Oyster House eateries in Savannah. Deen rejects the allegations.
In a deposition for the lawsuit, Deen was asked whether she had ever used the “N-word.” Deen answered that she had probably used the racial slur when talking to her husband about “when a black man burst into the bank that I was working at and put a gun to my head” — an incident that took place 30 years ago.
Jackson’s lawsuit also claims Deen wanted to plan a party in the style of a Southern plantation, staffed with black waiters dressed to resemble slaves. In her disposition, Deen said she was speaking of an experience she had had in which the wait staff composed of black men in white jackets and bow ties, and that she had said she would love for Hier to “experience a very Southern style wedding” such as that.
Amid the firestorm, The Food Network dropped did, as did Smithfield Foods, one of her key sponsors. There are questions now over whether other businesses, including QVC and Walmart, may cut ties with Deen.
If you have ever been a victim of workplace discrimination, and are afraid to speak out against your employer’s illegal employment practices, our firm can assist you in the successful resolution of your matter. Our firm handles cases for both employees and employers, allowing Don Ho Law to have a unique perspective on every type of employment law matter. Call us today at 714-748-7715 for a free consultation.
Published by Don Ho Law. Don Ho is an experienced criminal defense and employment law attorney in Riverside and Orange County, California.
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