LOS ANGELES – A Black former Legends Hospitality worker sued the company Tuesday, alleging its failure to feed her as promised during Super Bowl LVI at SoFi Stadium forced her to buy her own food and water in order to avoid complications from her diabetes.
Cheryl Hackett maintains in her Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit that she was forced to quit shortly after the Feb. 13 game because of her work conditions.
Her lawsuit allegations include wrongful constructive termination, race and disability discrimination, retaliation, failure to accommodate, failure to take all reasonable steps to prevent discrimination and retaliation and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
Hackett seeks unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.
Legends Hospitality is a food, beverage, merchandise, retail and stadium operations corporation that is a joint venture of Yankee Global Enterprises and Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones. A Legends Hospitality representative could not be immediately reached for a response.
The plaintiff was hired by Legends as a part-time merchandise associate in 2021 at SoFi Stadium and she usually brought her own meal to work because her diabetes required her to eat and take insulin on schedule, the suit states.
Three days before Super Bowl LVI, Legends management told Hackett and other employees working during the game that they would not be allowed to bring food or drinks into the stadium, but the company would provide meals, the suit states.
Hackett began working at around 5:30 a.m. and was told about four hours later that she should break for lunch, but none of the vendors were open, the suit states.
When Hackett’s white supervisor, Kaitlyn Foley, asked the plaintiff how she was doing, the plaintiff answered that she needed to eat because of her diabetes, but that no food or water was available, the suit states.
In front of Hackett’s co-workers, Foley “flew into a rage and screamed at plaintiff in a loud and threatening manner,” accusing Hackett of complaining and saying she should send her home because of the plaintiff’s attitude, the suit states.
“Plaintiff was shocked by Foley’s outburst and concerned as to what Foley meant by `attitude,”‘ the suit states.
Hackett believed that Foley stereotyped her because the plaintiff is Black and that she would not have accused a white employee of the same thing, the suit states.
Hackett complained to human resources that she and the other employees had no food or water, the suit states. The plaintiff later learned that Foley came back and threw a case of water on the floor, according to the suit.
“Plaintiff was feeling light-headed as well as fearful and emotionally upset,” according to the suit, which further states that Hackett bought her own food from vendors when they opened at 11 a.m.
Hackett worked until the end of her shift, did not feel safe and was so humiliated, intimidated and shaken that she went to the restroom several times to cry, the suit states.
Hackett made a written complaint to human resources the next day, but the director told her that Foley had already “expressed her perception of events,” the suit states.
Legends has not contacted Hackett since three days after Super Bowl LVI and her experiences has been unable to return to work for the company, believing that “no reasonable employee would continue to work for Legends under these circumstances,” the suit states.