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Posted On: January 2, 2009 by Peter M. LaSorsa

Sexual Harassment Lawsuit Filed by Firefighter

A sexual harassment lawsuit was filed by firefighter Paulette Rork, 38, of Englewood in the Lee County Flordia Court system alleging the “intentional infliction of emotional distress and sexual harassment.” In Illinois attorneys can file sexual harassment lawsuits for similar actions.

Rork was employed by the Boca Grande Fire Department from 2000 until being “constructively discharged” in September of 2007. He first filed a claim with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") that was dismissed in February. The file was closed because the commission was unable to conclude that the information obtained establishes violations of the statutes. In Illinois just as in other states, the dismissal of a charge by the EEOC does not mean the case is necessarily over.

Rork is seeking $15,000 in lost wages, insurance and attorney’s fees as well as money for unspecified damages, gender discrimination and sexual harassment.

Rork claims to have been subjected to a constant stream of pornographic imagery, via the Internet, while on the job. She claims that the work environment during the seven years that she was employed there was gender biased, hostile, and that she was made to clean and do office work when placed on light duty while the male workers were allowed to do other things such as drive the fire trucks. This is also a form of glass ceiling for a female worker.

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