"Women's Equality" and "United We Stand" are two well-known phrases that are being put to the test in the courts in the land of Texas.
The man is suing the woman for, amongst other things, harassing him.
Hurricane Katrina victim Samuel Michael Schildkraut landed in Fort Worth from a three and a half year stay in New Orleans. He found work at Saltgrass Steakhouse which is owned by Landry's corporation. He was touched to be taken in, especially being the oldest of the non-management team, being 41 years old. He was also the ONLY man to work in the position as a host while the other hosts are female and half his age.
When allowed to decide what would be his first official day of work after his orientation day, Sam took September 11th, 2005 and reflects, "It is a way I can always remember something wonderful and open-minded on a day when peace is remembered for receiving its worst confrontation.". Sam also recalls receiving the two thousand dollar check from FEMA on this 9-11-05 while at work at Saltgrass and was even more memorable towards a gift certificate from the Saltgrass staff of over one hundred dollars that could be used at a Target store.
Within his first two weeks, Sam came to make friends and deal with some negative types, but still thought highly of the Saltgrass in some ways. Saltgrass seemed to want to help a hurricane victim, but then things changed.
Sam took a day to return to New Orleans to gather what he could and bring it back. The following day he was terminated from Saltgrass. So the company that took him in ended up tossing him out when he spent good money to return to get his things under a time line forced upon him by a vicious apartment complex.
On the day of termination he was told by then General Manager Doug Dailey as to why Sam didn't fit in and was very wishy washy as to give any real logical reasons; however, in desperation of an excuse, Dailey threw out there that Sam made a comment to a customer to the affect of, "This is our menu and this is the booze.". (the booze) referred to the Saltgrass wine list. Sam instantly asked Dailey that if jokingly saying this is the booze instead of this is the wine list was such a problem than why wait weeks to tell him when Saltgrass didn't make a habit of sitting quietly when they saw something wrong. Dailey was tongue tied.
It is also well known that Landry's owns other spots such as Joe's Crab Shack which sells t-shirts that have on them mention of getting crabs and other questionable material, but Saltgrass is CURRENTLY getting away with harassing Schildkraut for a harmless and fun sense of humor. On Sam's cable t.v. show out of New Orleans, he shows Saltgrass' outdoor tables which have black mildew on them.
Sam went home and called one of the waitresses from the restaurant by the name of Sarah Beshara. Sam had once looked in the host area for paperwork and to his surprise found a list of employees and their home phone numbers; and was surprised that a business would make these numbers so very available. So Sam called Sara and she was very supportive and, in reference to his termination, she stated, "That's really *hitty of them." Days later, he bumped into Beshara at a bar where she was, as usual, drinking, and she gave Sam a hug.
The following day Sam heard from Landry's corporate headquarters which he had been contacting for about the week long time period of his termination and was informed by them of their hearing about numerous calls Sam made to former co-workers to complain about losing his job. Again, Sam only called Sarah. Landry's didn't go into great detail of all the alleged calls and Sam informed them that he had only one call with a former employee and even there the call was of a two-way friendly nature that did not emphasize his termination.
SAM WAS RE-HIRED !!!
Suddenly Doug Dailey was talking to Sam as if he were the hard working type who belonged as part of the Saltgrass team. Sarah Beshara maintained her friendliness towards Sam and continued to allow him to give her gifts, something that Schildkraut did for numerous co-workers and managers and sites that some also did the same for him. In fact, Sam recalls, "One of the most touching moments of my life was during the week of being without work at Saltgrass when one of the former co-workers, Racarole Height, left a hundred dollar bill along with a note stating that she wishes he could get his job back.
So for some two months following there were ups and downs. There were moments of very reasonable high hopes that Schildkraut would be promoted to waiter-trainee; but there were moments when things looked dim. In one case, Sam, his senior citizen father, and their frined, a black female named Delois, came to Saltgrass for lunch. During the lunch, which Schildkraut got an employee discount, manager Deborah Free approached Sam's party and said, in a cold manner as if just coming out of having her heart surgicially removed, that Sam was spending a lot of money at Saltgrass and this left Sam and his party very offended and presented Saltgrass as very cheap and petty, instead of worrying about paying attention to more important items such as proper food preparation and good customer service skills, a high ranking manager was harassing guests with pride. Schildkraut finds it hard to believe, because he is Jewish, that people still say "Jews are cheap" but is pretty sure that Jews don't run Landry's, and as a side note, about being cheap, Jews DID NOT invent minimum wage. Sam noted that music played at Saltgrass was of a country nature and some songs mentioned "Jesus" but none mentioned "Moses".
Another incident had one Alicia Juarez, a senior member of the host staff, running Sam around the place like a five dollar ho. Situations would occur in which Juarez would loudly talk down to Schildkraut in front of customers, shove menus at him ( which would be considered ASSAULT if the man shoved menus at the woman ) and basically Alicia, a non-manager of course, had the whole place kissing her azz.
At a point early on, during his first employment with Saltgrass and during the week of being unemployed from the place, Schildkraut made mention of the name Fertitta. To make a long story short, Tilman Fertitta is the owner of Landry's which runs Saltgrass Steakhouse. He is related to Frank and Lorenzo Fertitta who basically run Station Casinos in Las Vegas, and as it turns out, Schildkraut had worked for Station Casinos some years back and WON AN UNEMPLOYMENT HEARING AGAINST STATION CASINOS and went on to have a front page story printed highlighting the harassment of employees at Station Casinos. Of course, Sam Schildkraut had no way of entering an unfamilar Saltgrass Steakhouse knowing anything about the FERTITTA KLAN. Within the article Sam wrote against Station Casinos, he mentioned one Kevin Kelly who was the big man on campus along with a cocktail waitress and recalls the most comical segment of his article which reads, "...both are married, but not to each other.".
Soon after the Fertitta factor came into play, things got worse. SUDDENLY Sarah Beshara turned on Sam and began talking behind his back and complaining that he was always bothering her. Suddenly Sam was hurt by the concept of "United We Stand" taking another slap in the face, whereas "Women's Equality" was taking a few jabs also, as Beshara, and Height ( slowly turning on Schildkraut ) did their talking behind his back. Sam reflects, " United We Stand should not only mean that we get together to fight the enemy but should include not stabbing someone in the back just because they aren't our friends, relatives, or boss. As to 'Women's Equality', there are women dying in the war in Iraq while women at home cry to men or managers just to get their thrills by harassing a man. Certainly there are some cases where the man of course harasses the woman, but take my advice, go to an EEOC establishment and listen for one guy telling another how he was harassed by a female co-worker. If Sarah and Racarole can be woman enough to lift heavy trays and not cry for help than they can be lady enough to confront me if they have something to say, and this is to say nothing of how for all this time they were so friendly towards me.".
Complaints made by not only Sam, but of customers about the vicious attitudes of the likes of hostess Alicia Juarez and manager Deborah Free, along with other men and women of Saltgrass went unexplored, only to the limit of Sam hearing that Landry's REFUSED to talk to his witnesses and only had concerns about THEIR witnesses. Even when Sam named a witness in his favor, Sarah Holt, or as Sam calls her "the good Sarah", Saltgrass even refused to speak with Holt who was amongst their staff.
About a week before his termination, Sam and his friend Delois wrote a letter of complaint and Sam highlighted factors of going outside the company to the EEOC and press if Saltgrass kept harassing him. About a week later he was terminated. The excuse for the termination was over the phone call he made to Sarah Beshara. Landry's cannot give answer as to why the phone call made outside their property was any of their business. Sam would later create a web group titled "hurricanesaltgrass" on yahoogroups.com and later spoke with Ron Zeitner, another manager of Saltgrass, and Sam asked Ron to speak to the staff and ask them not to write profanity on this group and Ron stated that it was not the place of management to get involved with what staff is doing on their personal time off-property, but Saltgrass again won't answer why they are OBSESSED with a friendly phone call that was none of their business to begin with.
As to Sam's friend Delois, Sam states, "Delois is one of a kind, if she were in New York on 9-11-01, she would be running neck and neck with the Mayor to try and save lives and saddly there are too many women sitting back and doing nothing but let men do their talking for them, hold doors for them, and ready to fight for them when they start trouble. In other words, Sarah is no Delois and she never will be.".
To rap this up, Saltgrass wrote to the EEOC in response to Schildkraut's complaint stating that they discussed the phone call before re-hiring Schildkraut, then, paragraphs later, wrote that some two months later, SUDDENLY discovered he made the phone call. This along with other lies surrounding the phone call. Saltgrass also dropped the ball by stating that Schildkraut LIED on his employee application by not mentioning working at Station Casinos. So, to begin with, Saltgrass REFUSES to answer as to whether or not it is the same company as Stations Casinos, they refuse to admit how Schildkraut would know about the connection being an out of towner, and they refuse to answer as to why he was re-hired from the same employee application if he lied, especially when the application only asks for one's past four jobs. Another IMPORTANT FACTOR here is that Landry's is basically known under its New York Stock Exchange Symbol of LNDY while Stations Casinos is STN which PROVES Sam did not work for the same company.
Legal action will be forthcoming to Saltgrass. As to Sarah Beshara, Sam has brought suit against her. Sam is overwhelmed with the progress of his legal actions to date. For one example, Beshara LIED to the courts in stating that Sam assaulted her by flicking a cigarette at her and by coughing in her face and stated that she informed the police of such. Sam confirmed with police and found that no such report was made and has motioned the courts to jail Beshara for lying to the courts and has submitted the evidence. Even more here folks, Beshara and Schildkraut were sent an order by the courts to pay for MEDIATION and Sarah did not pay by the given time line.
The court order states, " FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH THIS ORDER MAY RESULT IN IMPOSITION OF SANCTIONS AGAINST THE OFFENDING PARTY AND/OR THE FILING OF CONTEMPT CHARGES AGAINST THE OFFENDING PARTY, POSSIBLY SUBJECTING THE OFFENDING PARTY TO A MAXIMUM OF SIX (6) MONTHS IN JAIL AND/OR A FINE OF UP TO $500.00.".
Schildkraut has had about one dozen legal actions that he has brought, once even being named as a defendant, but regardless he has won all legal situations, and a very few are still being decided.
Saltgrass REFUSES to explain why they don't drug test employees or managers.
Sam concludes, "As to United We Stand, people hear my type of story all the time, and sometimes people like me are malcontents, other times some people like me are victims, regardless, it is bad enough that the press comes up with excuses to not look into matters such as a hurricane victim being hired and fired when rumours had it hurricane victims were being hired for about a month for businesses to get good press and in general businesses do harass employees often enough, but the worst part of it is that whether you see me as a malcontent or a victim, most of you don't care and find ways to support billionaires like the Fertittas. United We Stand means that you should care even if it didn't happen to you, that the press not allow this to go on by inventing reasons not to write about it, after all, the press never does stories about whistleblowers having to deal with no help from the press, and therefore you should not only care about yourself but those around you and begin to say something that doesn't take my side or their side, just say ' This needs to be investigated.'.