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Former Edmonton Northlands staff sue organization for millions

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Former employees suing Northlands
WATCH ABOVE: They were fired from their jobs and now, months later, several former parking attendants are suing Northlands. Vinesh Pratap has the details – Apr 18, 2016

EDMONTON — They were fired en masse last October from Northlands and now a lawsuit has been launched alleging wrongful dismissal and defamation.

Last fall, 38 Northlands parking staff were let go after concerns about cash arose. Northlands claimed at the time two audits showed half the cashiers were not following procedures.

The mistakes, if extrapolated over time, would have cost the organization more than $1 million, according to Northlands president and CEO Tim Reid.

An internal memo was also sent out alleging theft took place. The decision was made to terminate the employees without cause. They were offered severance.

At the time, the head of Northlands addressed the controversy.

“As a not-for-profit that quite frankly has significant financial challenge on the horizon, losing $100,000 a month, we just thought was bad management,” Northlands CEO Tim Reid said last October 9.

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“I feel insulted,” Sarah Pollard told Global News the day earlier. “I’ve never been labelled a thief. I can’t believe I’ve been labelled a thief.”

READ MORE: Northlands CEO defends mass firing of parking cashiers

Another former cashier, Monique Labonte, echoed the same sentiment: “Being accused a thief really ruins my reputation of finding a future job.”

Labonte and Pollard are among 19 former employees now suing Northlands and Reid.

The lawsuit is seeking $9.7 million in damages. It was filed on March 16.

None of the allegations has been proven in court. With the matter before the courts, Northlands declined comment Monday.

The lawyer representing the group, Glenda Pidde, could not be reached for comment.

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