The banner across Aramark’s website declares the company is dedicated to “Enriching and Nourishing Lives.” Allegations of maggots, undercooked meats and altered expiration dates have called that slogan into question.
Aramark is a huge international food service company with locations in 22 countries. Based in Philadelphia, the company boasts almost $15 billion in revenues and 163,000 employees. Those revenue figures will dip just a bit; Michigan Governor Rick Snyder ended Aramark’s $145 million food service contract with the state’s Department of Corrections. The company had been providing food service to 45,000 inmates.
Since it’s inception, Aramark’s contract with Michigan has been fraught with problems and controversy. (We have three other Aramark stories on our Due Diligence blog; just use the search feature in the upper right hand corner.)
One former employee – turned – whistleblower accused the company of wrongful retaliation after she complained about unsanitary conditions. According to her, the company served undercooked food and meat that had fallen on the floor. She also claimed the company altered expiration dates on food. At the time of her allegations, a company spokesperson claimed that it would stand by its food safety record and “would not comment on allegations from former disgruntled employees.”
Unfortunately, for Aramark, there were many more allegations including at least two complaints of maggot infested food. Since then, the company has toned down its rhetoric and took responsibility for its performance.
Although the contract was not renewed or extended, the union representing the former food service workers displaced by Aramark still isn’t happy. That is because the state hired another private vendor to run the prison system food service operation. The union had wanted the prison system to rehire the displaced state workers.
It wasn’t just the food quality and sanitation allegations against Aramark that probably hurt the company. There were numerous reports of overcharging the state (inflating meal counts), employees bringing in contraband, sex between inmates and food service workers and even a murder for hire plot.
We remain interested in finding Aramark workers anywhere in the United States with information about false bills or fraud against government entities. While Michigan’s whistleblower law is focused on Medicaid, many states and the federal government have very broad whistleblower laws that allow large awards to be paid to those with information about fraud involving government funds.
To become a whistleblower, one must have original source (inside) information about fraud and must file a complaint in a federal district court. The government then has the opportunity to investigate. Ultimately, if the government receives any money, the whistleblower will receive a percentage.
Interested in learning more? Over the last 12 months our whistleblower clients earned over $100 million in award monies. The awards are real. For more information, contact attorney Brian Mahany at or by telephone at (414) 704-6731 (direct). All inquiries are protected by the attorney – client privilege and kept strictly confidential.
MahanyLaw – America’s Whistleblower Lawyers