There are some examples of sexual harassment on the job that seem to be so clearly unlawful, it is hard to imagine any person trying to get away with it. Unfortunately, many people do get away with this behavior when they are not held accountable. One woman recently took steps to make sure the company where she previously worked did not get away with allowing sexual harassment on the job by filing a lawsuit.
The parties named in the suit are no longer with the company, and the restaurant where the woman worked and endured the harassment has since shut down. However, the woman still wants to hold them accountable for the harassment she suffered and her wrongful termination.
According to her claim, the woman started getting harassed by people after one of her coworkers obtained nude pictures of her. The coworker shared the images with others and the woman wanted the harassment to stop. She explained the situation to her supervisors, who promised to look into the matter. Little did the woman know, her supervisors had also seen the photos.
Instead of penalizing the harassing employees, the supervisors simply ignored their responsibility to investigate the matter. Then they made the decision to cut the woman’s hours, but not anyone else’s. Understandably upset by the reduced hours, the woman again spoke with her supervisors. At that point, they decided that there was “too much tension in the workplace” because of the situation and fired the woman.
It is very upsetting to read about claims like this one, which involve allegations of such obvious and blatant sexual harassment. The workplace should be a safe and fair environment where people do not have to worry about being harassed, mistreated or wrongfully fired. However, if and when these situations arise, it can be crucial for victims to hold the offending party accountable for violating their rights.
Source: Courthouse News Service, “A Textbook Case of Sexual Harassment,” Kevin Lessmiller, March 20, 2014