• Ten former and current Sweetgreen employees are accusing store managers of racial discrimination.
  • The plaintiffs allege managers used and tolerated the use of racial slurs toward Black workers.
  • Managers are also accused of sexual harassment in the lawsuit.
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Ten former and current Sweetgreen employees are suing the salad chain, saying they experienced racial discrimination and sexual harassment.

The lawsuit, which was originally filed in March by two plaintiffs, was amended Thursday to include 10 plaintiffs. Filed in the New York Supreme Court in the Bronx, it names two general managers — referred to as “head coaches” — as defendants, in addition to the company.

The suit alleges that the plaintiffs were subjected to racial slurs, and experienced inferior treatment based on race by managers and coworkers at seven different New York City locations.

The plaintiffs, who all self-identified as African American, said Black employees were called lazy and passed over for promotions, with managers saying “Hispanic people work harder than Black people.”

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They added that they were frequently referred to as the N-word and “monkeys” by coworkers and managers, who faced no repercussions.

The plaintiffs also accused the managers of sexually harassing female employees, and making graphic comments about women’s bodies — including customers’ — and having sex with Black women.

Complaints directed at higher-ups and the Sweetgreen human resources department were allegedly ignored for years.

“At the time, when I spoke with managers at Sweetgreen about the derogatory racial comments they told me I needed to pick and choose my battles. I hope they will now realize that this is a battle worth fighting,” plaintiff Kiana Alvarado told Insider in a statement.

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The seven restaurants named in the lawsuit are located in Manhattan’s Financial District, Greenwich Village, Midtown East, the Meatpacking District, the Upper East Side, and the Upper West Side.

Sweetgreen didn’t immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

“At Sweetgreen, we are committed to diversity as well as a safe and inclusive workplace. We take these accusations seriously and do not tolerate any form of harassment, discrimination, or unsafe working conditions,” a spokesperson said to CNBC in a statement.

In 2020, another New York-based employee sued Sweetgreen for gender discrimination and sexual harassment. The case was dismissed in January 2022.