Does the Buffalo Bill Center of the West have issues with discrimination? That answer would be yes, according to several former employees. One such employee is Emly Zalewski.
Emily Zalewski was terminated on Monday, September 9, 2019 The excuse that Terry Harley from Human Resources used was that Zalewski was “unprofessional in your behavior towards your supervisor.”
But according to the former Buffalo Bill Center of the West, former employee Emily Zalewski, was not the real reason she was terminated. The “unprofessional in your behavior towards your supervisor” was just the excuse to get rid of her.
The real reason was a discrimination case: she was the “Whistle Blower.” Here are the facts as Documentation that the Wyoming News has obtained.
According to the EEOC, a charge of discrimination was filed by Ms. Emily A. Zalewski with the Wyoming Fair Employment Program.
In this document, Emily Zalewski was being paid less than her co-workers, and when she kept complaining to her supervisor, they at first ignored her. They started to treat her indifferently and finally accused Zalewski of “unprofessional behavior to her supervisor” because she would not continue to allow the Buffalo Bill Center of the West to continue their discrimination against her, according to Emily Zalewski.
At the time, Zalewski was 63 years young. She believed that the Buffalo Bill Center of the West had purposefully discriminated against her for several reasons, one being that Zalewski would not go along with the deception that she claims that the Buffalo Bill Center of the West was telling tourists. She refused to be involved with this action even when her supervisors told her to speak the lies/deception to tourists.
According to Zalewski, the food allegedly cooked in the cast iron pots and pans in front of the tourist was not cooked in those cast Iron Pots and Pans. Instead, they were cooked inside the Center’s food preparation and then dumped into the Cast Iron pots and pans as if they were cooked on the fire inside the cast iron pots and pans. Emily was ordered to tell customers that the food was cooked from scratch in those pans. But according to Emily Zalewski, that was a total lie and deception. Zalewski wanted nothing to do with being a part of this blatant deception that the Buffalo Bill Center of the West wanted the employees to put forth to the tourists. So, Emily became a whistleblower, and Emily paid dearly for it and lost her job.
Another form of discrimination that Emily Zalewski alleged was that she felt she was being discriminated against because of her youthful age of 63 at the time. She thought that this was a violation of the age discrimination in employment act of 1967 as amended. Emily had great reviews verbally from staff and other employees that she was satisfactorily performing her job well.
Yet Zalewski was paid less than similarly situated but substantially younger employees. When she approached her supervisor for a wage increase to match the younger employees, she was met with hostility, and the supervisor created a hostile work environment for her.
Zalewski alleges that her tips were always withheld. While at the same time, the younger employees would receive their tips, and Emily Zalewski was paid at a substantially lower rate than similarly situated but substantially younger employees.
After she was terminated, Emily Zalewski claimed that her position was filled by an individual outside her protected class or group.
Zalewski’s immediate supervisor was Josie Hedderman, who knew that Emily Zalewski 2018 was denied her tips from events but that her tips were given to other staff members, Zalewski alleges.
Zalewski also stated that Peter Seibert, Executive Director, and Bruce Sauers, Head of Kitchen and Department of Revenue, also discriminated against her.
In Wyoming Law, the Wyoming Labor Standards Division enforces laws that prohibit discrimination based on Race, Sex, Religion, Color, Age, National Origin, Ancestry, and Handicaps.
This Wyoming law also prohibits an employer from retaliating against an employee who alleges any type of discrimination or participates in an investigation. Zalewski was never given any reason why her tips were being withheld and then given to some of the younger employees.
The Wyoming News discovered that Zalewski was interviewed by the Acrum committee regarding internal theft and corruption. Zalewski was the whistleblower of internal theft that was going on and the supervisor coverups which wreaked corruption.
In the complaint, Mike Brown–Security and Brandon Walters, Head of Security, Crystal, Karina Black, Peter Keryper, Steve Cranfill, and Ann Crowell’s names are mentioned in the complaint form.
Are their other complaints filed against the Buffalo Bill Center of the West? The Wyoming News will address that in upcoming articles.