It was the job from Hell – literally.

Gresham shopping centre, target of demonic attack

Gresham shopping centre, target of demonic attack

Four former G4S security guards are suing the company after being expected to battle demons and other supernatural forces while on shift at a shopping mall in Gresham, near Portland, Oregon, on the Pacific Northwest coast of the USA.

According to local newspaper the Willamette Week, the guards are suing G4S Secure Solutions for $3.5 million, claiming the international security company’s kiosk in the shopping centre was run by a devoutly Christian supervisor who told employees their gay family members were going to hell, played videos about the Illuminati and warned that the security kiosk could be attacked by demons.

The four former guards — Wayne Rush Jr., Andrew Gale, Jimmy Drennan III, and Alphonso Nunez – had previously worked with G4S at other Portland-area sites before arriving at Gresham Station, a shopping centre with an Old Navy, a Dress Barn and a Bed Bath & Beyond.

The lawsuit claims the supervisor referred to the Gresham Station security kiosk as a “church,” posted Bible verses on the walls, and held daily “prayer circles” with two other guards. The supervisor said “they needed more Christian people to work at the Gresham Station because they were ‘opening the gates for demons to enter the site.’”

The religious discrimination lawsuit says when the four guards complained to upper management about supervisor Sarah Houser, they were fired.

The Stop G4S campaign's version of the logo

The Stop G4S campaign’s version of the logo

British-based G4S is the world’s largest security company, and with over 620,000 employees, is one of the biggest private sector employers in the world. The company being sued by the guards – G4S Secure Solutions – is a wholly-owned US subsidiary of the British parent company.

The company is hugely controversial for a number of reasons, most notably its provision of security in outsourced prisons in UK, South Africa, Australia and other countries. G4S provides security for the UK Border Agency, and have been accused of using unreasonable force. In 2010, G4S guards killed an asylum seeker Jimmy Mubenga.The company is also accused of torturing prisoners in South Africa.

G4S IsraelG4S supplies security equipment and services for use at Israeli prisons, checkpoints and settlements in the West Bank. It also helps to maintain Israel’s prison system. In 2012, G4S won the contract to provide the security for the London Olympic Games. However, the company failed to deliver, and the British army had to step in.

The motto of the company is “Securing your world” – but no one said anything about having to battle the Forces of Darkness as well!

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Walton Pantland

South African trade unionist living in Glasgow. Loves whisky, wine, running and the great outdoors. Walton did an MA in Industrial Relations at Ruskin, Oxford, and is interested in how trade unions use new technology to organise.

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