Pot on Links at Golf Channel, Ex-Worker Says

(CN) – A freelance cameraman says he’s entitled to a drug-free workplace, but he can’t get it at The Golf Channel. He claims that after he reported co-workers for “smoking marijuana on the golf courses during the taping and production of live golf events,” he was harassed and fired.




     Greg Kochis sued TGC Inc. dba The Golf Channel, of Orlando, and NEP Broadcasting, of Pittsburgh, in Cuyahoga County Court, Cleveland.
     Kochis says he’s worked as a freelance “videographer” since 2000 for The Golf Channel, but his coworkers made his life miserable after he reported them to two managers for firing up on the links and at a golf show, in April and May 2007.
     Kochis says the mangers agreed to stop the problem, but did not stop it. He claims his co-workers ostracized him by refusing to share hotel rooms with him and “writing messages such as ‘Kochis is a Rat’ and ‘Kochis sucks Dick’ in and around the workplace.”
     Kochis claims that the harassment continued after the bosses asked him for the names of people who were toking up at work, and he complied.
     He says he also complained to the bosses that “his work suffers when the people who are assisting him in the television golf production are under the influence of openly smoking ‘pot’ on the golf course.”
     Then, Kochis says, his coworkers “began to argue, harass, argue and push” him, and once left him at a hotel on purpose. After he “begged” for help to stop it all, Kochis says, someone altered his time card and the company used that as a pretext to fire him.
     He seeks damages for wrongful firing and whistleblower violations. He is represented by James Ingalls.

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