Oil pipeline manager fired after claims of harassment

Posted: Thursday, January 27, 2000

ANCHORAGE - Alyeska Pipeline Service Co. Vice President David Laurence was fired last week after he refused to accept a reprimand for harassing and intimidating workers.

Laurence was chief information officer, the top person in charge of computers, for the company that operates the 800-mile trans-Alaska oil pipeline.

Company President Bob Malone said the reprimand followed an Employee Concerns Program investigation into harassment and intimidation complaints.

``A couple of employees raised an allegation,'' he said, adding that the investigation revealed a ``pattern of conduct.'' He declined to reveal details about the complaints. Laurence could not be located for comment.

The Employee Concerns Program was created about five years ago in an effort to make workers more comfortable about bringing problems to the attention of management.

Its creation was the result of the pipeline company's efforts to overcome employee fears that upper management tolerated, if not condoned, harassment and intimidation of workers reporting safety and environmental problems.

Malone said he thought the complaints against Laurence were serious enough to deserve disciplinary action.

``He had two options: Accept the findings or leave the company,'' said Alyeska spokeswoman Jennifer Ruys. ``He would not sign, so he was asked to leave.''

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