Grocery Store Manager Fired For Missing Work After Being Stabbed


After 12 years with Rainbow Foods in Minnesota, Scott Ostrom felt pretty confident in his job security.  Then, one day the grocery store manager was stabbed at work by an angry customer who became frustrated with the self-checkout.

Ostrom was lucky to live — a notebook in his pocket and his name badge managed to deflect most of the blow to his chest.  But his luck didn’t hold out professionally.  After suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder because of the incident, the grocery store fired Ostrom, claiming he was taking too long of breaks when he was at work.

According to the St. Paul Pioneer Press, Ostrom was uncomfortable working in the store after the incident and asked for a transfer.  Roundy’s Supermarkets, the corporate owner of the chain, refused his request.  Ostrom started taking breaks outside when he became overwhelmed by arguments and raised voices.  The company accused him of “job abandonment,” and subsequently fired him.

Then, when he filed for unemployment, they tried to block his claim, citing absenteeism.   The ruling was eventually overturned and he received his benefits.

Corporations see workers as numbers and part of the profit margin equation.  Even after taking a knife in the chest for his employer, Roundy preferred to refuse accommodations and fire a long term employee rather than potentially have their profits eaten into.

Think of that the next time a politician claims “corporations are people.”

Photo credit: Wikimedia commons

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SeattleAnn S.
Ann S.4 years ago

Dirty thing to do to a loyal employee of 12 years.

Ira L.
Ira & Ellie L.4 years ago

Boycott the stores. Hit them where it hurts - In their over-stuffed-with-greed wallets!
Mr. Ostrom should have been given a pay raise!
Mr. Ostrom is a victim of abuse/violence in the workplace, and should definitely be compensated for damages incurred!
Mr. Ostrom is owed a public apology, and if he doesn't get one, he should sue the hell out of Rainbow/Roundy stores.

Vic Atkin
Vic Atkin4 years ago

He should be paid considerable compensation for his ordeal, whilst at work, doing his job! Since the employer only made things worse they should pay enough compensation to keep this guy for the rest of his working life, but of course you know that's never going to happen.

If I lived anywhere near any of these stores I'd boycott them in an instant, any fair minded person would!

Jonathan Y.
Jonathan Y.4 years ago

Ostrom should be reinstate with full pay at another location - not exactly unreasonable, since he took a knife in the chest!

Either that or the company should pay his full retirement benefits for life. Scumbags.

Cathy Noftz
Cathy Noftz4 years ago

~~What is wrong with this picture?~~ALOT!!~~Mr. Astrom shouldn't have been fired!~~These stores usually need to make up a story, just to make up for their own failures!~~Wishing Mr. Astrom sucess in his future!~~

Judith Corrigan
Judith Corrigan4 years ago

Shop elsewhere.

Nicholas N Rose H.

I am appalled a Rainbow's dismissal of one of its store managers!

The State of Minnesota's Department of Employment and Economic Development, a third party, has looked at Rainbow management's decision to fire store manager Scott Ostrom as a decision made in error(*). If Bob Mariano, CEO and chair of Roundy's Board of Directors, finds fault with that decision, Mr. Mariano should challenge that decision in the courts rather than his public vilification of Mr. Ostrom(**).

Rainbow in disingenuous, as a regular shopper at Rainbow I have come to appreciate the extraordinary leadership Mr. Ostrom displays. His employees who have described to me the respect they have for him. "Mr. Ostrom is a buffer between the 'boneheaded owners' and us 'the little guys'." I met Mr. Ostrom when he was the manager of the second largest Rainbow / Roundy Stores that Mr Mariano is CEO of. That store is in northeast Minneapolis, just off 18th and Johnson St.

I knew Mr. Ostrom as the manager who implemented major store changes for corporate management. He kept the store open. Customers and employees satisfied while the changes took place. The store remained a profit center for Rainbow. After this success story, he was than transferred to the St Paul University Store because of the light rail construction and its impact on the Midway area. Since his transfer to St Paul, he has been called back from the St Paul University Store for other changes in the Northeast store. Why? Because of

Steven M.
Steven Mitsch4 years ago

Unfortunately there are some pretty bad managers that don't care about people. All they care about is the bottom line. Just make everyone work to their limits. I bet there are some that would probably put adult diapers on their employees so they would not have to take bathroom breaks. This guy put in for a transfer and was denied. How can they claim he abandoned his job? He went back to work after being stabbed. Did they hire security for at least when this man worked? That probably would've made him feel a little safer. It helps when workers believe that their higher-ups are on their side and believe in a SAFE working environment.

Marion Erceg
Marion Erceg4 years ago

What goes around comes around. Watch this space!

Joy Jin
Joy Jin4 years ago

awful. poor man. :(