A former employee at Boulevard Brewing recently posted on reddit that she had left the brewery because of harassment she received when she was pregnant.
But that was just the beginning of what she describes as “a sexist work environment,” accusations that Boulevard Brewing was quick to counter while acknowledging that the organization could have been more sensitive…
This from her post…
My boss stood me and another female employee up in the lab, in front of another coworker, and demanded to know if we were pregnant. When we refused to answer, he told the other woman ‘the only way you could be pregnant is by your cat’, then continued to ask me. I reported this to HR, but it started a cycle of reporting his behavior to HR and then being punished (by him) for going to HR.
This wasn’t a one time incident. My boss’s bad behavior was a well-known ‘joke,’ in the brewery. Former employees warned me about him. When coworkers found out I was pregnant, their response was ‘oh, he didn’t take that well, did he’. The brewmaster described him as “a monkey”.
In spite of this, I was asked to come up with solutions to help fix his bad behavior. When I acted on these, I was called anti-social. It was made clear that I was the problem for not handling it better. They had asked me in my interview if I could handle working with men, so it was my problem.
I am no longer in the brewing industry. I loved my job, I worked hard to get there, and I am extremely proud of the work I did. I think it is important for everyone to know Boulevard is not a good place for women to work. It is not a “family” company.
On January 25, Kansas City, Mo-based Boulevard Brewing responded to the former employee’s accusations…
A STATEMENT FROM BOULEVARD BREWING COMPANY
As you may have read, a former employee recently took to social media to level various allegations against Boulevard Brewing Company. Know that we take these charges very seriously.
For 31 years, we have endeavored to act with honor and integrity in all things, and to treat our people and our community with respect and dignity, guided by our founder’s dictum that “it’s never wrong to do the right thing.”
While we cannot delve deeply into personnel or employment matters, it is worth noting that these charges were thoroughly and impartially examined a year ago. The investigation determined that certain situations could and should have been handled with greater sensitivity, but clearly established that there was no harassment or discrimination.
We are not perfect, but we have not, and we will not, tolerate harassment, mistreatment, or prejudice in any form. We will use this situation as an opportunity to learn and to grow.
While the entire brewing industry has work to do, we will not sit on the sidelines. There are many ways in which we can improve, can do better and be better, can build a more inclusive, supportive and nurturing environment for all of our people, but especially for the many women throughout the company.
Today, we are convening a task force headed by several of our female leaders to take another look at the allegations, and to spearhead the effort to fully empower the women of Boulevard. We are committed to doing what needs to be done to ensure that each and every one of our people feel safe, supported, and respected.