Why You Don't Want To Work For Paula Deen

It's more than just a food fight: Famed comfort food chef Paula Deen and her brother are being sued for sexual harassment by a former restaurant general manager.

Paula Deen and brother sued for sexual harassment

After watching a few episodes of Paula's Home Cooking, you'd guess that Paula Deen would make for a great boss who fills her restaurant kitchen with loads of butter and lots of loud laughter all the time.

However, that's not the case -- that's not even close. A former general manager of Uncle Bubba's Seafood and Oyster House in Savannah, Georgia, which is owned by Paula Deen, has filed a lawsuit against the Food Network chef and her brother, Bubba Hiers.

In a lawsuit filed Monday, Lisa Jackson said she was hired to work as a hostess in February 2005 and was promoted to general manager that August. She was then given six months to turn a failing restaurant around.

"Now I'm going to do something I've never done. I'm going to put a woman in a man's job," Paula Deen allegedly told Jackson.

The harassment continued for five years until Jackson quit in August 2010, said her attorney, Wesley Woolf.

"Every single day she came to the work place, she encountered this harassment," Woolf said.

The lawsuit also contends that Jackson was not paid as much as her male counterparts and was asked by Hiers to bring in pictures of herself when she was younger. Hiers also frequently made sexually-based comments to Jackson, targeting her with unwanted advances and watching pornography in the small office the two shared. He also distributed pictures of two women having sex at an office meeting and complained about heavier staff members. Jackson said Hiers grabbed her face during an event at the restaurant and declared "I love you," then later screamed at her and spit in her face.

The suit also alleges that Jackson's sibling supervisors made racially derogatory comments about the restaurant's African American workers and required them to use a separate restroom from Caucasian employees like Jackson.

Jackson said she routinely suffered from panic attacks, and left her job after her doctor suggested doing so to improve her health. She said in the lawsuit, which seeks unspecified damages, that she "continues to endure immense pain and has suffered greatly at the hands of Defendants' outrageous and intolerable conduct."

Photo credit: Mr Blue/WENN.com

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Comments on "Paula Deen and brother sued for sexual harassment"

Ron June 27, 2013 | 3:40 PM

This comment is for Lorrie, no i hope Ms Deen did not say the N word but how dare you make a broad statement for all African Americans , We do not think we are slaves, please make your negative statements more positive like we belive in Paula Deen the rest you said was just Garbage, so now you can get over yourself. GOOD LUCK PAULA we are rooting for you.

Lorrie June 26, 2013 | 3:46 PM

I have watched Paula for years and I love her. If her brother did those things he should be held accountable. As for Mrs. Deen, she hasn't done or said anything that most people, including blacks themselves haven't said. The only people who keep slavery alive is the blacks. There have been far worse things happen throughout history. Example: the American Indians unfair and horrific treatment, the Holocaust was a nightmare, and womens mental,physical and ual mistreatment by men and society over thousands of years. If the black population is going to use the word in public and private then they need to stop getting offended when someone else uses it. GET OVER IT! Move on with your lives and FYI, you are not slaves!

Katie June 26, 2013 | 1:53 PM

I'm reading all your remarks and some are for, some against. I's really hard to believe someone would stay around for 5 years let alone be harrassed for that amount of time. But everyone is jumping to conclusions. Only GOD knows! We have to wait until she has her day in court. May he allow the "right one" to win!!!!

Karen June 26, 2013 | 10:18 AM

Well anyone can see thru this, IT ALL ABOUT JACKSON WANTING MONEY! AND LOT OF IT. Unfortunatly she will get it. Ms Jackson needs to enjoy what she gets, because she will answer for her love of money and her willingness to destroy anyone in her path to god.

deanna June 25, 2013 | 7:55 PM

if Jackson was putting up with that she would have quit a lot sooner. no one would put up with that for 5 years and then wait another 3 years to make a big deal about it. if it is true she should be suing her brother not her. she wasn't the one harassing her! it sounds like she is just trying to get money. and as for Paula saying the "n" word? what does it matter? do people go around suing every person that says it? NO! she's just suing her because she has money. blacks call us --------, -------, and all kinds of other racist names but it would be racist of us to point it out and make a big deal about it. the majority of whites don't think of blacks as any different than themselves but the blacks make it everything out to be that way. there are black only s, but if we say something about starting a white only then that's wrong. they have black only school scholarships but if we have a white only scholarship then that's wrong. and yes whites do get more scholarships then blacks because there are more of us and more of us go to college. every time blacks think they are being discriminated against they have a march....I think we should have a march against all of this.

j coop June 25, 2013 | 2:24 PM

Should bde an interesting lawsuit. How does one put up with such behavior for five years? I can hear the answers now.

j coop June 25, 2013 | 2:21 PM

This ha4rassment went on for five years? I'd certainly have some interesting questions for the person bringing this suit. I can well imagine, as may others, what some of the answers might be.

Janet June 25, 2013 | 11:21 AM

This is a classic case of money and greed on Paula's part. When you are feeling a little too sure of yourself, your crystal palace is bound to tumble. All I can say is she deserves what she gets. I hope the outcome leaves Paula Deen with egg on her face. Fine heritage to pass on to her kids. Shame on her!!

Christine June 25, 2013 | 6:27 AM

Janet, I'm so sick of hearing about what blacks have been through. YOU have not been through slavery, nor has anyone you know. You read about it in a book in school, just like everyone else alive today. I sure as heck never owned slaves, so I don't owe you anything. It's a part of our history, and it was horrible. But it will never change, and you can't expect people that never lived through it or had any part of it to atone for the mistakes of our very, VERY distant relatives that we have never met. And I don't care how you justify it, using the word (no matter what incorrect way you say it) will not bring it to an end. Using t only keeps it alive. If you want that word to be gone from the English language, start by banishing it from your own. Otherwise, you have no room to talk.

Bill Garrett June 24, 2013 | 5:22 PM

This is still America in good taste or not we all still have freedom of speech.

Randelle June 24, 2013 | 2:48 PM

To use it or not use it is very ignorant! She should've known better. She a grown --- woman and it is not cute or funny! When African American use it, it should not be okay or acceptable. I don't care if the majority of the folks in the South use it or not. Once you put on your GROWN WOMAN skirt, be prepare to accept the resposibilities. She's too ---- old not to know what she was saying or thinking it was okay to say. Just the very thought of her saying she used it as a joke was INSULTING! Now, I don't care what she says in the privacy of her own home because its HER HOME and she has hte right to say whatever she likes but when you open you MOUTH in PUBLIC and all this ignorant stuff comes out, I'm just saying...BE A GROWN --- WOMAN AND ACCEPT THE BACKLASH!! Good job Smithfield, Good Job Food Network! You have my respect.

Paulette June 24, 2013 | 10:02 AM

I did like the food network channel but without Paula Deen - I will probably not watch it anymore. The main problem here is someone is trying to get money from her that she has worked hard for. The African American's will always say that all white discriminates against them - it will never end. But all you have to do is look around and the truth be told - the white's are being discriminated against. Kicking her off of the food network is basically letting the blacks win. That is why they will never be happy. One day The Food Network will wake up and see that only Blacks are on this network. Just like the next food network star will have to be black - if not the blacks will scream discrimination. You will have to put the blacks on regardless if they can cook or not.

Jeanne June 24, 2013 | 7:53 AM

Maybe it's Paula Deen's brother that should be sued and not Paula.

Sharon Hudgins Clauson June 23, 2013 | 9:28 PM

Before you people condemn someone WITHOUT having all the information necessary, you should walk a mile in that person's shoes, then JUDGE NOT LEST YE BE JUDGED. FOR BY THOSE SAME STANDARDS, SO SHALL YE BE JUDGED.

Carroll June 23, 2013 | 6:20 PM

Wake up America. Paula Deen is "The Best of The Best" and I as well as many of my friends will not watch the food network until she is back. How is it Blacks use the N word and make slurs about whites and no one gets bent out of shape. Now if Paula did make an N word slur its not in malice anymore than when a black says it. I am white and have many GOOD black friends who agree.

Dawn June 23, 2013 | 5:03 PM

If Paula Deen publicly called someone the N word it would be one thing but to use it privately .... that is freedom of speech...like it or not we have that right to use the word. I have heard black men call each other the N word ....guess thats OK? We need to get off the pity potty on the name calling and shame on you Food Network...guess I will use my right not to watch your channel. D.J.

Sherri June 21, 2013 | 3:06 PM

I believe her apology. She is a nice woman and believe that she made a mistake, like everybody. Dont take it up your butt! Black people are equal with whites, we are all the same! Who cares what ONE person thinks? Shes from a time of racism and grew up around it.

Nicole June 21, 2013 | 3:03 PM

She is from a different time period and no it isnt right now but she grew up thinking that talking like that was the right thing to do. I know it was wrong of her but i honestly dont think she should be killed for this! Rappers rap using the N word all the time and nobody gets in trouble for it or offended. This isnt right.

Jerry March 06, 2012 | 12:13 PM

My wife and I go have beent to both of Paula Deen's places in Savannah several times. On several occasions, we've asked the employees what it is like to work for Paula Deen and we have never heard anything but highest praise for her as an employer. Last March, one cashier at the gift shop said that working for her was the best thing that ever happened to her.

julie March 06, 2012 | 7:38 AM

I believe every word Jackson says' Paula Deen is awful.

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