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Nationwide Kroger protest planned for employee who died by suicide after alleged abuse at work

Evan Seyfried Kroger employee suicide
Posted at 12:12 PM, Mar 09, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-09 12:12:44-05

On the one-year anniversary of the day 40-year-old Evan Seyfried died by suicide after allegedly enduring abuse at the Kroger location where he worked, protesters plan to gather nationwide to demand the company take responsibility for his death.

On Wednesday at noon, protesters plan to gather on the steps of the Hamilton County Courthouse — located just a few blocks from Kroger's Cincinnati headquarters — to demand that the country's largest supermarket chain take responsibility for Seyfried's death.

Protests are planned throughout the country. According to a press release from protests organizers Justice for Evan, people plan to gather in Pittsburgh, Nashville, Washington D.C. and Sacramento, California.

In July, Seyfried's family filed a wrongful death lawsuit that alleges the manager of the Kroger location in Milford, Ohio, where Seyfried worked, created "disturbing, dangerous, and deranged conditions."

The suit also accuses a manager at the grocery chain's Milford location of instigating "a campaign (in October 2020) dedicated to ousting Evan while proclaiming her intention to make Evan's life a 'living hell.'"

"And then, from that point on, this is fall 2020, because of his refusals to comply with, quite frankly, dangerous conduct," Austin LiPuma, attorney for Seyfried's father, Kenneth Seyfried, said in July. "They then targeted him with just, as I mentioned, completely indescribable behavior."

The suit claims the manager's feud with Evan Seyfried stemmed, in part, from concerns he had raised about COVID-19 precautions, which led to "hazing, taunting and bullying" and attempts to sabotage his work.

As part of the alleged bullying, Seyfried's boss "mocked and humiliated" him for wearing a mask — in line with the company's pandemic policies — as well as for his political beliefs, the suit states.

The release from the protest organizers says Kroger ignored Seyfried's attempts to report his co-workers' behavior, nor did the company investigate Seyfried's claims of a hostile work environment.

Kroger spokespersons never responded to requests for comment made by Scripps station WCPO in Cincinnati last July after the wrongful death lawsuit was filed.

This story was originally published by Felicia Jordan on Scripps station WCPO in Cincinnati.