2020 has marked one of the most difficult years on record for restaurants facing decisions of temporary or permanent closures, layoffs and creating safe and healthy environments for employees and customers.
But pandemic disruption hasn't stopped employment-related lawsuits from showcasing ongoing labor issues, from sexual harassment to gender and race discrimination, that still plague the restaurant industry. In fact, COVID-19 exacerbated gender-related pay gaps, especially for tipped workers.
Some storylines involved shocking sex scandals while other suits revealed inappropriate behavior by managers and co-workers or mishandling of overtime pay and layoff notices. In this roundup, we look back at 10 of the biggest employment-related claims that challenged restaurants this year.