My Friends

Arrow Up

Arrow Up
Arrow Down
,
  • Mon
    27
  • Tue
    28
  • Wed
    29
  • Thu
    30
  • Fri
    1
  • Sat
    2
  • Sun
    3
Literary Arts Festival Apr 27, 2015 This 19th annual fest features a diverse range of readings, workshops, signings, panel discussions and more from established and respected authors from around the country. From Monday, April 27 to Thursday, April 30. 60 other events on Monday, April 27
 
Seen Local
The second in our series on the artists awarded grants through the Creative Catalyst Fund
Nibbles | Food & drink
MEAT San Diego event with Dona Esthela and Javier Plascencia
Well, That Was Awkward
Local cat dad indulges feline feelings at San Diego's first kitty coffee shop
Notes from the Smoking Patio
A round-up of new San Diego releases now streaming
Film
New indie starring Rinko Kikuchi leads our rundown of movies screening around town

 

 
Log in to use your Facebook account with
San Diego CityBeat

Login With Facebook Account

Recent Activity on San Diego CityBeat
 
Home / Blogs / Last Blog on Earth
. . . .
Tuesday, Nov 08, 2011 - Last Blog on Earth | News

Former employees accuse San Diego Reader of gender discrimination

Lawsuit filed by three female sales reps alleges a 'boys club' at alt-weekly

By Dave Maass
Jim Holman Jim Holman, publisher of SD Reader

Three former sales representatives for the San Diego Reader filed a lawsuit against the alt-weekly in October, alleging gender discrimination, sexual harassment and wrongful termination. 

The suit, filed by Kelly Bonelli, Amy McKibben and Beth Wexler (who have a combined 78-year work history with the Reader), alleges that publisher Jim Holman is responsible for allowing preferential treatment for men in the workplace, which intensified with the hiring of sales manager John-Paul Franklin in 2008. 

"Plaintiffs' efforts to succeed within the company were frustrated by a 'boys club' that created a corporate culture in which the overriding environment was such that men were seen as superior and were given unfair advantages such as preferred leads and 'head starts' on new sales promotions," the suit claims. 

Wexler, who worked for the Reader for more than 30 years, says she was "constructively terminated" (i.e. felt compelled to resign after conditions were made intolerable) in August 2009. McKibben, a 16-year employee, was fired in March 2011, as was Bonelli, a 26-year employee, who was terminated while on disability leave for "work-related stress." 

The women obtained a right-to-sue letter from the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing on Oct. 4, 2011. They allege that the Reader did not have a Human Resources department capable of handling discrimination or harassment complaints. 

"For many years, women seemed to be tolerated, but not equal to men," the lawsuit states. "The environment became noticeably worse in 2008 when JP Franklin became the manger [sic] of the sales department.... Franklin has and displayed a very 'bullying' style of management, and it is ostensibly directed more toward women than men." 

As examples, the plaintiffs say that Franklin would regularly engage in casual conversations with male staff, but abruptly stopped whenever a woman tried to join in. He "frequently" went to lunch with male employees, but rarely included female workers. Franklin is currently listed on the Reader masthead as "general manager."

Franklin's alleged conduct included, "telling women sales is a 'man's world,' withholding new sales promotions from women until after a man or men had been able to sell the new offer to one of their clients, and displaying favoritism toward men when re-assigning accounts." 

Inquiries were sent to the Reader and California Catholic Daily, another publication operated by Holman. This post will be updated when we receive a response. 

 
 
Close
Close
Close