AG sues over invalid food handler permits

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by JESSE JONES / KING 5

Bio | Email | Follow: @getjesse

KING5.com

Posted on July 7, 2014 at 11:08 PM

Updated Monday, Jul 7 at 11:21 PM

Food safety comes first at Pegasus Pizza in Kirkland, especially when you’re serving the best slice in town.

“If you do not have the proper temperatures you are going to get other people sick.  It turns into
illness, it turns into lawsuits. It's the most important thing,” said General Manager Khristi Levack.

Food safety is also important to health departments who test restaurant employees and issue food worker cards.  Levack and her crew signed up for a food workers card online through a website
called wafoodhandlers.com. They paid $10 each. And they all thought it looked legit.

“It indicated the new Washington state rules, it said here what the updates were,” explained Levack.

But during a King County Health Department inspection the employees at Pegasus found out their cards were not valid.  It turns out, they’re not alone.  According to Attorney General Bob Ferguson, some 11,000 of these cards have been sold to Washington state residents.

“Now they have this certificate that's worthless, now they have to go back and get a certificate, a real one, from a legitimate source,” explained Ferguson.

Ferguson filed suit against eFoodhandlers Inc. and has reached a $160,000 settlement. Approximately $120,000 will go towards refunds while the other $ 40,000 will go towards the state's costs and fees.

“Every one of those people will get their money back, we get our fees and costs it doesn't cost the state anything and we shut down this company from doing business in Washington state,” said Ferguson.

Washington residents can only  get a real food handlers card online from www.foodworkercard.wa.gov.
 

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