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SUIT AGAINST HUDSON'S AND ITS TOP OFFICERS FOR CAMPAIGN OF ABUSE, HARASSMENT AND INTIMIDATION OF UAW SUPPORTERS

 SUIT AGAINST HUDSON'S AND ITS TOP OFFICERS
 FOR CAMPAIGN OF ABUSE, HARASSMENT AND INTIMIDATION OF UAW SUPPORTERS
 SOUTHFIELD, Mich., Nov. 25 /PRNewswire/ -- The following was released today by Miller, Cohen, Martens & Ice, P.C.:
 Ten Hudson's employees sued Hudson's and its top officers today over a campaign of extreme and outrageous abuse, harassment and intimidation directed at UAW supporters. The 10 employees worked at four different Hudson's stores where the UAW has been conducting an organizing campaign throughout 1990 and 1991.
 Named individually and personally as Defendants were Dennis Toffolo, president of Hudson's; Greg Gibson, a former vice president of Hudson's; and Paul Strickland, Hudson's director of Employee and Labor Relations.
 Also named individually and personally as Defendants were Jim Strong and James Connor, labor relations consultants hired by Hudson's in connection with the UAW organizing campaign, and Huffmaster Associates, a Dearborn, Mich., company which provides temporary security guards in labor disputes and strikes.
 In their lawsuit, Plaintiffs allege that as a matter of labor relations policy and tactics, Hudson's top officers decided upon a campaign to intentionally inflict emotional distress on employees who supported the UAW or were suspected of supporting the UAW, and Hudson's accomplished this through a campaign of abuse, harassment and intimidation.
 According to the Plaintiffs, the campaign of abuse, harassment and intimidation included: constant surveillance, monitoring employees' activities and conversations, videotaping of UAW supporters interrogations, threats of discharge and loss of benefits, use of co-employees as spies, obscene name-calling, favoritism for anti-UAW employees, physical and verbal assaults, steering customers away from UAW supporters, false accusations of sexually illicit and criminal conduct, and disclosure of employees' personal and confidential information.
 In particular, the complaint alleges that Toffolo himself participated in the creation of an abusive and hostile environment directed at UAW supporters, including threats to close stores, threats to discharge UAW supporters and calling a UAW supporter an obscene name.
 The suit was filed in Wayne County Circuit Court. The Plaintiffs are seeking several hundred thousand dollars in compensatory and exemplary damages.
 The Plaintiffs' attorney is Bruce A. Miller, who has been a labor and employment law attorney for more than 30 years.
 This suit follows a 1977 Supreme Court decision that permits an employer's anti-union campaign is so extreme, outrageous and abusive as to constitute the tort of intentional infliction of emotional distress. Plaintiff Mary Grab stated that Hudson's has made life at work "a living hell" for her and other UAW supporters. Chris Poma said that when the president of Hudson's, Dennis Toffolo, personally called him an obscene name and threatened to fire him, he felt like "the lowest thing on the face of the Earth." Poma added, "In a civilized society, you should not have to suffer emotionally just because you want to join a union."
 -0- 11/25/91
 /NOTE: For a copy of the complaint, CONTACT: Bruce A. Miller, Esq., of Miller, Cohen, Martens & Ice, P.C., 313-559-2110/
 (DH) CO: Dayton Hudson; United Auto Workers ST: Michigan IN: REA SU:


SM -- DE027 -- 6945 11/25/91 15:01 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 25, 1991
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