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DOX: Woman sues Pasadena company for forcing Scientology on her

The WISE logo

The WISE logo

We have the legal complaint and some more details about the story that broke out of Pasadena, California yesterday: A woman named Annie R. Lee is suing a company after she refused to take Scientology classes she says were forced on her by her employers, resulting in her being terminated and replaced by members of the Church of Scientology.

This isn’t the first time a legal action has resulted after employers have tried to force Scientology on their workers.

There’s an entire wing of Scientology, known as the World Institute of Scientology Enterprises (WISE) that targets employers, trying to convince them that Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard not only discovered the secrets of the human mind and the true nature of the universe, but also that he was a genius in business matters.

WISE tends to target chiropractors, dentists, and veterinarians, and in recent years we’ve covered stories about an Oregon dentist who was fined for forcing Scientology on one of his employees, and a Miami chiropractor who was notorious for running an entire Scientology academy for his workers.

But even though WISE tends to target certain professionals, it will set up shop at any business, given the chance. In this case, Annie Lee says in her legal complaint that in June of 2014 she went to work for Lusida Rubber Products in Pasadena, a company that makes custom molded and extruded rubber products that was founded in Shanghai in 1984 and then opened a satellite office in Pasadena to take orders for three plants in China.

 
LusidaRubber

 
Lee took a job in sales at the Pasedena company, working for its principal, Wayne Chin. But then, a couple of months later, in September, Chin brought on an executive named Bill Johonnesson.

Johonnesson has a long history in WISE and as a Scientologist. (There’s also a listing for a Wayne Chin in the database, showing involvement in Scientology going back to at least 2007).

After Johonnesson was hired, in about October 2014 Lee says she and the other employees of Lusida were then required to go through Scientology training sessions, at least three times a week and more.

When Plaintiff [Lee] informed her superiors, including general manager Defendant JOHONNESSON, that she did not feel comfortable with participating in these mandatory training courses, she was told that she had no choice. Moreover, she was told by [Johonnesson] that if she did not know how to wear “multiple hats” that she was not fit to work for the company. Apparently, the term “wearing multiple hats” is one of the teachings of L. Ron Hubbard. Also, [Johonnesson] repeatedly spoke negatively about other religions in front of Plaintiff and other employees and urged Plaintiff to denounce her existing religious beliefs and adopt Scientology as her new religion.

On December 2, 2014, Lee was apparently asked to write a “success story” about the course she was taking, but instead she spoke up and said she objected to having Scientology forced on her. Less than two weeks later, she was given a poor job performance review and was fired. She claims that after Johonnesson became general manager, the company was forcing out others who were not happy with the Scientology program, and replaced them with actual members of the church.

Last month Lee got a “right to sue” order from the state of California’s Department of Fair Employment and Housing, and her attorney, Gary K. Daglian, filed her lawsuit on Tuesday.

But it sounds like Lusida itself has gone through some kind of upheaval since Lee was fired. According to an online listing at a complaints board, the Shanghai mothership of Lusida asserted control of the Pasadena company, prompting Wayne Chin to post this notice at the Lusida website…

AS OF JULY 1, 2015 LUSIDA RUBBER PRODUCTS, INC., CAME UNDER NEW MANAGEMENT WHICH REASSERTED OUR ROLE AS A GLOBAL SUPPLIER OF CUSTOM RUBBER AND PLASTIC COMPONENTS. WE ARE HERE TO SATISFY THE NEEDS OF OUR CUSTOMERS WITH EXPERTLY CRAFTED PARTS AT A COMPETITIVE PRICE, SAFELY PACKAGED AND SHIPPED ON SCHEDULE TO OUR CUSTOMERS….

Has the Scientology experiment at Lusida been quashed by the home company in China? We’ll try to find out. In the meantime, here is Lee’s complaint. We look forward to your thoughts on it.

Annie R. Lee v. Lusida Rubber Products

 
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Chris Shelton with part two of his conversation with Rachel Bernstein

“Rachel Bernstein is a family and individual counselor and a cult specialist in Encino, California. She has helped over 1,000 people recover from participation in destructive cults. In Part 2 of my interview with her, we discusses the control methods destructive cults use including the power of group agreement and the use of language to shape thought patterns. All of this applies 100 percent to Scientology and I think anyone who is interested in trying to figure out how these things work is going to find this interview very educational.”

 

 
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Bonus photos from our tipsters

Hey, girl. Let’s get purified together here in Taichung, Taiwan.

 
BigBlue

 
Hey, Legoland. Thanks for the cash. Now we can push Scientology on kids here in Nepal!

 
YHRINepal

 
…and here in India!

 
YHRIIndia

 
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BOOK NOTES
3D-Unbreakable

We didn’t get a chance to include photos in our book, so we’ve posted them at a dedicated page. Reader Sookie put together a complete index and we’re hosting it here on the website. Copies of the paperback version of ‘The Unbreakable Miss Lovely’ are on sale at Amazon. The Kindle edition is also available, and shipping instantly.

Our book tour is concluded for now. (But you can re-experience it through this nifty interactive map!) We’ll let you know about future appearances. Previous events: Santa Barbara (5/16), Hollywood (5/17), Orange County (5/17), San Diego (5/20), San Francisco (5/22), New York (6/11), Chicago (6/20), Toronto (6/22), Clearwater (6/28), Washington DC (7/12), Hartford (7/14), Denver (7/17), Dallas (7/20), Houston (7/22), San Antonio (7/24), Austin (7/25), Paris (7/29), London (8/4), Boston (8/24), Phoenix (9/15), Cleveland (9/23), Minneapolis (9/24), Portland (9/27), Seattle (9/28), Vancouver BC (9/29), Sydney (10/23), Melbourne (10/25), Adelaide (10/28), Perth (10/30)

 
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Posted by Tony Ortega on December 10, 2015 at 07:00

E-mail your tips and story ideas to tonyo94 AT gmail DOT com or follow us on Twitter. We post behind-the-scenes updates at our Facebook author page. Here at the Bunker we try to have a post up every morning at 7 AM Eastern (Noon GMT), and on some days we post an afternoon story at around 2 PM. After every new story we send out an alert to our e-mail list and our FB page.

Learn about Scientology with our numerous series with experts…

BLOGGING DIANETICS: We read Scientology’s founding text cover to cover with the help of LA attorney and former church member Vance Woodward

UP THE BRIDGE: Claire Headley and Bruce Hines train us as Scientologists

GETTING OUR ETHICS IN: Jefferson Hawkins explains Scientology’s system of justice

SCIENTOLOGY MYTHBUSTING: Historian Jon Atack discusses key Scientology concepts

PZ Myers reads L. Ron Hubbard’s “A History of Man” | Scientology’s Master Spies | Scientology’s Private Dancer
The mystery of the richest Scientologist and his wayward sons | Scientology’s shocking mistreatment of the mentally ill
The Underground Bunker’s Official Theme Song | The Underground Bunker FAQ

Our Guide to Alex Gibney’s film ‘Going Clear,’ and our pages about its principal figures…
Jason Beghe | Tom DeVocht | Sara Goldberg | Paul Haggis | Mark “Marty” Rathbun | Mike Rinder | Spanky Taylor | Hana Whitfield

 

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