Thrift store

This Black Trans Woman Takes On Hostess, And These Ho-Hos May Have Been Playing With The Wrong

After multiple alleged cases of discrimination and a wrongful termination, former Hostess employee Danyell Wallace is ready to let the cake company have him.

Wallace, a black trans woman, was fired during Pride month in a move she says was unfair.

That firing was apparently just the tip of the iceberg of discrimination she and her co-workers faced at the Chicago bakery.

“The supervisors insulted me towards my colleagues,” she told the Chicago Tribune. “Other times it took the form of gossip that the supervisors indulged in.”

Wallace chose to use a single stall women’s restroom out of concern for her safety in the more common restroom areas. Apparently, the move made her the target of “stressful and humiliating” remarks from other employees and supervisors.

She also alleged that management engaged in segregational practices, relegating black workers to a second shift and gay workers to a specific second fryer line during that same shift. She says this area was chosen for discipline in a way that other areas and shifts were not.

Related: Washington woman who shouted obscenities at a trans YMCA employee was shocked to have been banned

Wallace initially filed an internal complaint with Hostess, but his dismissal was upheld by the company. That’s when it’s time for her to make some noise.

She contacted the organization Black Workers Matter, which again tried to remedy the situation with the company without legal action in July. After further inactivity by the hostess, they are ready to take their case to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

According to Black Workers Matter organizer Dan Giloth, the group is set to approach the EEOC about at least two more hostess workers.

Garland Rose, a former bisexual employee on site, says he was also made redundant during Pride month and is therefore now homeless.

He was reportedly fired for bringing donuts home without proper approval. He says the practice is openly common among employees, but earned him specific punishment because of his orientation.

“It’s very unfair for anyone, whether you’re straight, gay or bisexual, to have to come to work and feel discriminated against and feel uncomfortable,” he says. “It’s just not right.”

Related: This Christian thrift store asks all job applicants what they think of LGBTQ+ people

Black Workers Matter held a press conference earlier this week to draw attention to the situation and announce Wallace’s complaint to the EEOC

In addition to organizers and staff, the press conference featured Audrey Harding, Legislative Director to Cook County Commissioner Brandon Johnson.

Harding read a statement from the commissioner expressing support for his corporate challenge.

“For too long, black employees at this factory have suffered racist abuse, firing and retaliation for speaking out and demanding basic fairness and humanity from their bosses,” the statement read. “This must stop.”

“There was a policy and practice of hostility toward workers in my area because of my gender identity and sexual orientation,” Wallace wrote in her complaint.

Addressing the crowd at the press conference, she said: “I’m not just doing this for myself, but also for the other workers.