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More harassment lawsuits have been filed against Stroh.

More harassment lawsuits have been filed against Stroh

Three more lawsuits alleging sexual harassment and other misconduct have been filed against Stroh Brewery Co., increasing the total number of present and former female employees suing the company's St. Paul brewery to eight.

George Kuehn, general counsel for the Detroit-based beer company, said the company was not informed of the new allegations unit the suits were filed late last Friday in Ramsey County District Court.

However, Lori Peterson, the Minneapolis attorney representing the plaintiffs, said Stroh knew of the pending suits and should not have been surprised by the allegations.

Five women filed similar lawsuits in November alleging that Stroh allowed a hostile environment to develop at the St. Paul plant by failing to educate or discipline employees who engaged in the activities, and fostered an anti-female attitude through television and print ads.

The three plaintiffs allege they were subjected to sexual assault by employees, requests for sex from Stroh supervisors, lewd comments and pornography, in addition to Stroh's advertising.

Plaintiffs Antonia Felipe of Maplewood, Beth Gruber of Cottage Grove and Dianne Chaves of Stillwater allege that Stroh, through such advertising as its television ads for Old Milwaukee beer featuring the "Swedish bikini team," have undermined its efforts to combat sexual harassment in the workplace.

The suits seek compensatory damages of more than $50,000 and triple damages for violations of the Minnesota Human Rights Act.

The eight women who filed the suits are not currently working at the plant. Some had already left by the time they filed, and the others are on sick leave, Peterson said.

Kuehn says Stroh has investigated each instance of alleged inappropriate conduct it has been told of, and, when warranted, has taken such disciplinary action as termination and suspension without pay.

He refused to say how many employees had been fired or suspended.
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Title Annotation:Stroh Brewery Co.
Publication:Modern Brewery Age
Date:Jan 27, 1992
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