WKU Public Radio News Staff
Mon May 7, 2012
Maker's Mark Accused of Allowing Workplace Sexual Discrimination
One of Kentucky’s most famous bourbon distilleries is being sued by current and former employees who claim they were victims of sexual discrimination. Four of the five women suing Maker’s Mark still work at the distillery. The women filing the sexual discrimination suit say they were subject to a hostile and intimidating atmosphere around the bottling line at the distillery in Loretto.
The Courier-Journal reports the complaint was filed last month in US District Court in Louisville.
In the suit, four current workers and one former employee say female workers were kept on the bottling line, while more sought-after positions at the distillery went to less qualified male workers.
The plantiffs also allege they were subjected to sexually oriented workplace banter, and were met with management indifference or retaliation when they complained about the harassment.
Maker’s Mark has yet to respond to the lawsuit in court, and a Vice-President with Beam Global Spirits and Wine—the parent company of Maker’s Mark—declined to comment on the suit.
Maker’s Mark is one of the most well-known bourbons in the world, famous for the red wax seal that goes on every bottle at the Marion County distillery.