Posted On: April 30, 2009

Female Stock Brokers Settle Gender Discrimination Case For $33 Million

Four female stock brokers sued Citigroup Global Markets Inc. alleging gender discrimination. So, Varner, Orlando and Amochaev, all earned less than their male counterparts and had fewer assets to manage and fewer opportunities to earn more income. The females complained to the company's human resources department about the firms discrimination actions.

The four females filed a lawsuit alleging Citi intentionally maintains policies that lock in, perpetuate, and increase gender discrimination in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, 42 U.S.C. Section 2000e and California Civil Rights Laws. So also alleged race discrimination under Title VII.

Citi responded that there was no difference in treatment between the male and female employees. The parties settled before trial for $33 million plus interest. Citi also agreed to institute several anti-discrimination policies.

Posted On: April 29, 2009

Bear Stearns's Sexual Harassment Hush Money

Charlie Gasparino at the Daily Beast says that as one of his last acts as CEO, Jimmy Cayne agreed to pay a female employee $2 million to pre-emptively settle a sexual harassment charge against Ace Greenberg, the firm's longtime chairman. Greenberg said he wouldn't comment on the story, though he then followed it up by saying it was "bullshit."

Many corporations will do whatever it takes to put an allegation of sexual harassment to rest, especially if the allegation is made by a credible employee and involves an executive. Sexual Harassment settles seem to be on the rise and the dollar amounts of the settlements seems to be increasing. As a sign of the times, many employees who are being laid off now seem less loyal to those same corporations and behavior which they once put up with, is now the subject of litigation.

Posted On: April 28, 2009

Illinois Supreme Court Rules on Sexual Harassment Case

The Illinois Supreme Court overturned an appellate court deceision and ruled the Sangamon County Sheriff’s Department is liable for damages and legal costs in a sexual harassment case. The case was sent back to the Illinois Human Rights Commission to determine the amount of damages. The case stems from actions in 1998 involving Sgt. Ron Yanor and Donna Feleccia Scroggin. In that case Scroggin alleged Yanor invited her to accompany him to a bar, showed up at her house uninvited, and forced her to kiss him.

Scroggin’s attorney, Mary Lee Leahy, said the court’s decision will force employers to take more initiative when it comes to curbing sexual harassment.

The Illinois Human Rights Commission initially awarded Scroggin $10,000 in damages and her attorney $13,400 in legal costs.

In the majority opinion, Justice Anne Burke wrote that “the evidence of the forged letter, together with the other conduct proved by Feleccia, was sufficient to establish a hostile working environment.”
Posted On: April 27, 2009

Tompkins County Sheriff Peter Meskill's Secretary Alleges Sexual Harassment, Racial and Gender Discrimination

Robin Korherr filed a complaint Sept. 12, 2007, with the Division of Human Rights, alleging sexual harassment, gender discrimination, racial discrimination and retaliation. The Division of Human Rights later found probable cause in the case. Korherr worked June 2003 to August 2007 at the sheriff's office as Sheriff Meskill's confidential secretary. Korherr, also a member of Ithaca Common Council representing the city's Fifth Ward, alleges sexual harassment and retaliation from April 2005 to August 2007.

Korherr claims the sexual harassment began in 2005 when she was going through a divorce. Korherr says on several occasions, Meskill tried to kiss and grope her. Korherr testified that she approached her boss numerous times to rectify the situation and the sheriff would apologize initially, but become aggressive again and continued with the alleged behavior through his re-election in 2006. She also claims she received dozens of drunken phone calls from him.

Korherr says Meskill made it impossible for her to work by taking away her privileges and enforcing new rules and believes it was retaliation, saying it was because "I wouldn't sleep with him."


Posted On: April 26, 2009

Researcher Files Gender Discrimination Lawsuit Against University of Illinois at Chicago

Former researcher Irina Balyasnikova is seeking tens of thousands of dollars in damages in a gender discrimination lawsuit against the University of Illinois at Chicago. According to her lawsuit, Balyasnikova was passed up for promotions and paid less than her male peers. And the university used grant money she had secured for her own work to fund a male colleague’s research, the lawsuit says, shortchanging her out of $143,000.

Dr. Ronald Albrecht, the head of the department at the time, said in an affidavit that Balyasnikova aggressively sought raises and bonuses during her time at UIC and that by late 2006,

“her salary alone was an unmanageable burden for the department.”

In Illinois, a company may not terminate or otherwise take an adverse job action against an employee because of the sex of the employee. A companies policies and employment rules must be applied equally to all employees. Policies and employment rules which have a disproportionately adverse impact on one sex are strictly prohibited under both Illinois and Federal law.


Posted On: April 24, 2009

Dallas Fire Rescue Faces Second Sexual Harassment Lawsuit

Dallas Fire-Rescue ("DFR") faces a second sexual harassment lawsuit after a female employee, Leanne Siri found semen spilled and smeared on her desk. The body fluid was on her keyboard, on a photo of her daughter and inside the coffeec up she drank from. Siri said she was recently demoted as the highest ranking civilian for reporting sexual harassment to commanders, including explicit e-mails among other things. This is a form of retaliation and a hostile work environment.

"The thought it was in my cup made me sick at my stomach and made me ill," Siri said.

Siri's lawsuit also states DFR did allocate $75,000 for sensitivity training two years ago as a result of the first sexual harassment lawsuit, but later spent the money on an embroidery machine among other things. Many times as part of a lawsuit settlement, a company is required to spend money on training to correct previous mistakes.

Posted On: April 23, 2009

Waterford Township Settles Sexual Harassment Lawsuit For $325,000

Penny Jo Dye, a former information systems clerk and steno clerk for the Waterford Township alleged in her lawsuit that she became the subject of inflamed, derogatory and degrading comments of a sexual nature after she gave a statement supporting a co-worker who had also made claims of sexual harassment against the department. Dye and her attorney will be paid a total of $325,000 in exchange for dismissing the lawsuit.

Dye made a verbal complaint of sexual harassment to her supervisor per the police department's sexual harassment policy. A written complaint reportedly was filed with the township's director of fiscal and human resources.The lawsuit claimed Dye was then aggressively retaliated against by the township and the police department.

The lawsuit alleged the retaliation included removing Dye's job duties, removing her from e-mail distribution lists, withholding training, removing her ability to use flex time, initiating and continuing ridiculous and unjustified internal investigations to discipline her, relegating her to a corner and other demeaning treatment and firing her.

Posted On: April 22, 2009

Male Nurse Alleges Sexual Harassment in Markleysburg

In a lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh, Roy E. Dreshman Jr., 55, of Munhall, Allegheny County, alleges the sexual harassment began two months after he was hired as a nurse at Henry Clay Villa in Markleysburg in 1997. He alleges he was continuously propositioned, referred to as a "pretty boy" and subjected to unsolicited touching until he was terminated in 2008. Dreshman, a former stripper, indicated he told no one of his work as a stripper when he was hired, but it was made public when two co-workers recognized him. After that revelation, employees asked for lap dances, and some employees passed around photos of Dreshman as a dancer.

Dreshman alleged management retaliated against him when he complained, instead of initiating an investigation. The retaliation escalated when he threatened to file the EEOC complaint, ultimately resulting in his termination. Dreshman is seeking back pay, compensation for lost benefits and compensatory damages for pain, suffering and emotional distress.

"Residents made comments like: 'Oh, my gosh, you are one of them go-go boys,'" wrote Dreshman in the EEOC complaint.
Posted On: April 21, 2009

Green Bay Furniture-Maker Fired Executive for Exposing CEO's Sexual Affairs

The former president of a major Green Bay manufacturing firm, Roderick Ganiard, claims he was wrongly terminated after confronting his boss - CEO and philanthropist Richard Resch - about how his repeated affairs with female staffers were hurting the company. Ganiard filed a lawsuit against Resch and office furniture-maker Krueger International, alleging at least five women have brought sexual harassment complaints against the company, and that Resch forced Ganiard out after he led the company to record sales--which is retaliation.

"Mr. Ganiard was an at-will employee who had a written contract," said George Burnett, attorney for Resch and KI. "He does not like the severance package he negotiated and now is alleging all sorts of garbage."

Burnett said the allegations of sexual harassment are false and were not part of Ganiard's original lawsuit filed in state court last year. The company last month had the case moved to federal court, where the defendants' motion to dismiss is pending.

According to court records, Ganiard alleges a woman in her early 20s said Resch, 70, constantly asked her out and offered to transfer her to working directly for him. Mark Olsen, a 30-year employee and chief financial officer, resigned after Resch flew into a rage when Olsen confronted him about the complaint. Resch pressured the company to hire a waitress he met. The woman was very open with other KI employees about the fact that she was dating Richard Resch and her relationship with him. One woman who had a long-term relationship with Resch was earning substantially less than her peers in the company. Ganiard said he learned Resch "compensated her off the books with a number of indiscrete benefits" - including a home, trips and college tuition for her children.


Posted On: April 19, 2009

Nordstrom Pays $292,500 To Settle EEOC Discrimination Lawsuit

Nordstrom, Inc. will pay $292,500 to 10 former employees and furnish other remedial measures to settle a harassment lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"). The EEOC had alleged that the department store manager harassed Hispanic and black employees based on their national origin, engaged in racial discrimination and retaliated against those who complained about the harassment.

According to the EEOC's lawsuit, an alterations department manager at Nordstrom complained that she "hate[d] Hispanics," and that Hispanics were "lazy" and "ignorant." Hispanic tailors were chastised by the alterations manager for speaking to each other in Spanish. The same manager made other derogatory remarks such as "I don't like blacks" and "you're black, you stink." These types of comments are a clear violation of federal law and will always subject a company to liability. Harassment based on national origin, race, and color violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

"Employers must act swiftly to correct harassment and prevent abusive conduct," said EEOC Regional Attorney Nora E. Curtin. "Instead of dealing with the despicable racial and ethnic comments, Nordstrom management allowed the harasser to retaliate against the employees for complaining."

Continue reading " Nordstrom Pays $292,500 To Settle EEOC Discrimination Lawsuit " »

Posted On: April 17, 2009

Skilled Healthcare Group Pays $450,000 To Settle EEOC Lawsuit Over Discrimination

Skilled Healthcare Group will pay up to $450,000 and offer remedial relief to settle a lawsuit alleging discrimination in penalizing the company's Hispanic workers in California and Texas for speaking Spanish in their workplaces. The EEOC Lawsuit alleged Hispanic employees at the company's nursing homes and assisted living facilities were subjected to harassment; and to different terms and conditions of employment, promotion, compensation and treatment because of an English-only rule enforced only against Hispanics, which is a form of racial discrimination.

The EEOC found that 53 current and former Hispanic workers were subjected to the different treatment and harassment. The EEOC said some workers were prohibited from speaking Spanish to Spanish-speaking residents of the facilities and were disciplined for speaking Spanish in the parking lots while on breaks.

"As our country's workforce becomes increasingly diverse, employers must be vigilant in ensuring that if English-only rules are necessary, they are not discriminatory," EEOC Acting Chairman Stuart J. Ishimaru.

Continue reading " Skilled Healthcare Group Pays $450,000 To Settle EEOC Lawsuit Over Discrimination " »

Posted On: April 16, 2009

ABC Financial Services Pays $20,000 To Settle EEOC Lawsuit

ABC Financial Services will pay $20,000 to settle a pregnancy discrimination lawsuit brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"). The EEOC's lawsuit alleged that ABC Financial Services fired Reshma Bandaru because she was pregnant. Bandaru was hired as a data entry clerk and placed into a four-week training program at the company's Sherwood facility after the training, employees were required to take a test. Approximately one week after she began the training, Bandaru was hospitalized for a condition unrelated to her pregnancy and missed a day and a half from the training.

The company then fired her because she had missed work and would need further leave to have her baby. Such alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex (including pregnancy discrimination). Pregnancy discrimination charge filings with the EEOC have increased substantially over the last ten years from 4,219 in fiscal year 1998 to 6,285 in fiscal year 2008.


"Women should not be penalized for choosing to have a family," said Regional Attorney Faye A. Williams of the EEOC's Memphis District Office.

Continue reading " ABC Financial Services Pays $20,000 To Settle EEOC Lawsuit " »

Posted On: April 15, 2009

Opportunity Village Worker Files Sexual Harassment Lawsuit

Jessica Hein, 23,alleges that her shift leader, Ryan Dennis, 26, made numerous unwanted sexual advances toward her, including unwanted and unsolicited touching, grabbing, groping and squeezing various parts of her body. Hein alleges that the Village discriminated against her based on her gender and subjected her to a hostile work environment as a result of the unwanted sexual harassment.

The lawsuit alleges five counts of sexual harassment, assault and battery, negligent hiring, negligent supervision and negligent retention and also claims the Village knew or should have known of the sexual harassment and failed to take appropriate corrective action which resulted in retaliation against Hein for complaining about the sexual harassment and for filing complaints with the Mason City Human Rights Commission.

Village Executive Director John Severtson said due to confidentiality issues he could not say if Hein and Dennis are still employed at the Village.

Hein is seeking damages for each count, including, compensation for past and future suffering, emotional distress, loss of enjoyment of life, punitive damages in an amount appropriate to punish the Village for willful and malicious conduct and to deter the Village from engaging in such misconduct in the future, compensation for all past and future medical and counseling expenses and attorney fees.

Posted On: April 14, 2009

Central Michigan University Settles Sexual Harassment Lawsuit For $450,000

Central Michigan University has agreed to pay $450,000 after two women's soccer players, senior Sarah Burns and freshman Morgan Britt accused their coach Tony DiTucci of sexual harassment. Sexual Harassment can only be alleged between employees/employers with the one exception being if it involves education, or school sexual harassment. For the purposes of the sexual harassment, a student/teacher is analogous to an employee/employer. In this case the women are claiming assault and battery and physical contact, but the basis of their claim is sexual harassment.

The women each had a sexual relationship with Tony DiTucci because of his "skilled manipulation and seduction," lawyer Jennifer Salvatore said

The two women alleged that DiTucci carried out inappropriate secret sexual relationships with the two players while he was the head coach. They also alleged that he sent players inappropriate text messages, lied to his players and to university administration and manipulated his players in an effort to not get caught.

DiTucci maintains his innocence and states that both of his accusers had made suggestive romantic advances towards him on more than one occasion and said he reported the incidents to his supervisor and told them the advances made him feel extremely uncomfortable. In order for the women to prevail on their sexual harassment claims, they would need to show the harassment was unwanted or in this case they are alleging he was in a position over them as their coach and therefore inappropriate.

Continue reading " Central Michigan University Settles Sexual Harassment Lawsuit For $450,000 " »

Posted On: April 13, 2009

Dell Denies Age and Gender Discrimination Claims

As a result of the times and massive laysoffs in many businesses, a lawsuit was filed which accuses Dell Inc. of discriminating against women and older workers-age discrimination and gender discrimination. Dell denied allegations that it had treated employees unfairly and said that no layoffs were made on the basis of age or gender. The lawsuit against Dell accused it of segregating women into lower-grade positions with less pay and fewer promotions than men who performed comparably or less well. A former senior HR manager, Mildred Chapman, was denied promotions or pay increases even though her responsibilities were equal to, or greater than, younger male directors, the lawsuit alleged. Dell denied those charges in its response.

The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California and later moved to the Western District of Texas, where the plaintiffs are seeking class-action status. The lawsuit was filed by four former human resources executives who are seeking $500 million for the alleged discrimination. The women charged that Dell and its "old-boy network" discriminated against women and employees over 40 in areas including pay, promotions and layoffs. All fourteen members of the Dell management team were males at the time the lawsuit was filed.

"Consistently and at all times, Dell acted in good faith and maintained, implemented and enforced a policy in its workplaces against discrimination, harassment and retaliation," the company said.
Posted On: April 11, 2009

Cracker Barrel Settles Sexual Harassment Lawsuit With EEOC for $255,000

Cracker Barrel Old Country Stores, Inc. will pay $255,000 to settle a sexual harassment and retaliation lawsuit which was filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"). The lawsuit alleged Cracker Barrel allowed its general manager, managers, and other male employees to subject a class of women at its Cedar Bluff, Tenn., location to sexual harassment and retaliated. According to the EEOC the general managers, other managers and male employees made repeated and unwanted sexual jokes, and lewd remarks. The women complained to the managers and Cracker Barrel's 800 number complaint line but the company failed to take action to stop the harassment, according to the EEOC. As a result of complaining about the sexual harassment, the managers moved the complaining women to areas of the restaurant where tips were low in retaliation for reporting the sexual harassment.

Part of the settlement requires the company to conduct annual training on sexual harassment and retaliation for all employees at the restaurant for three years. Cracker Barrel must also maintain and report complaints of harassment received for three years and post its sexual harassment policy, including its 800 hotline number for reporting such claims according to the Tennessean.com

Cracker Barrel spokeswoman Julie Davis said the restaurant chain decided to settle the situation to maintain a good working relationship with the EEOC.

"Cracker Barrel Old Country Store and the EEOC share the same goal in this matter: a workplace that is free of harassment," Davis said

Under federal law (Title VII), retaliation occurs when an employee is fired or has his/her terms and conditions of work changed as a result of making a formal complaint of discrimination. In this case moving the women to areas of the restaurant where tips were low was a change of the working condition.

Posted On: April 10, 2009

Illinois Supreme Court Update--Illinois Human Rights Act Doesn't Bar Federal and State Claims

The Illinois Supreme Court held in Blount v. Stroud, 2009 WL 153862 (Ill Sup Ct. 2009) that the Illinois Human Rights Act ("Act") doesn't preclude employees who file a claim under the Human Rights Act from bringing other claims based on common law, or federal statutes in state court.

Background

Jerri Blount filed a multicount complaint in Cook County Circuit Court against her former employer Jovon Broadcasting Corporation and the owner and general manager. The two counts of interest to his analysis were her common law retaliatory discharge and retaliation under 42 USC Section 1981. The defendant filed a motion to dismiss claiming the Act precluded her from filing in the circuit court. The court rejected the motion to dismiss and she was ultimately awarded over $3 million dollars by a jury. The appellate court reversed holding the Act deprives Illinois Courts of subject matter jurisdiction. The Illinois Supreme Court heard the case and ruled that whether facts giving rise to a civil rights violation as defined under state law might also give rise to a civil rights violation under definitions found in federal statutes was not relevant and Blount had a right to pursue her claim under federal law in state circuit court.

Posted On: April 9, 2009

Jobs With The Most Reported Sexual Harassment Cases

Sexual Harassment at work goes unreported in almost 40% of the time. Approximately 61% of employees reported their sexual harassment to their superiors. According to LegalMatch.com statistics compiled within the last 5 years, the following jobs had the most reported sexual harassment cases:

Retail: 28%
Manufacturing: 16%
Government: 12%
Transportation: 9%
Professional (law, accounting, architecture, etc.): 9%
Education: 8%
Construction: 8%
High technology: 6%

With the downturn in the economy there has been a rise in the number of employment related claims including claims for sexual harassment. One reason is that an employee who may otherwise have looked the other way to keep her job, now finds herself unemployed due to mass layoffs and no longer has anything to lose by filing a claim for sexual harassment or other form of discrimination.


A hostile work environment exists when an employee experiences workplace harassment and fears going to work because of the offensive, intimidating, or oppressive atmosphere generated by the harasser based on race, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, citizenship status, marital status, or personal appearance. Hostile work environment is also one of the two legal categories of sexual harassment.

Posted On: April 8, 2009

78 Star Tribune Women Split $325,000 in Sexual Harassment Lawsuit

The Star Tribune will pay $325,000 to settle a long-running sexual harassment case with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") affecting as many as 78 female mailroom workers. The Star Tribune denied wrongdoing and said it settled to avoid costlier litigation. The paper reported Thursday that it had also agreed to employ a supervisor on every mail room shift, provide training, prohibit harassment and retaliation, and make a human resources staffer specifically responsible.

The case dates from August 2005, before current owners Avista Capital Partners took over, but continued during the current regime. Two women alleged that they were "subject to sexist slurs, being sworn at, and having sex-based comments made to them. Co-workers would tell them to put up with it because they were working in the 'male room,'" according to a federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission suit filed in September 2008.

EEOC litigator Laurie Vasichek says the settlement breaks down as follows:

• Three women who ultimately filed charges with the EEOC will split $175,000.

• Another 40 women who filed claims will split $90,000.

• Those 40 women, plus as many as 35 who sign waivers, will receive $800 each, up to $60,000. If fewer than 60 total sign up, they'll receive $530 each, up to $40,000.

Any unspent balance in the $40,000 or $60,000 will not be returned to the Star Tribune. Instead, it will go to a charity of the EEOC's choice.

Continue reading " 78 Star Tribune Women Split $325,000 in Sexual Harassment Lawsuit " »

Posted On: April 7, 2009

Female at Dallas Fire-Rescue files EEOC Sexual Harassment Lawsuit

Leanne Siri the highest-ranking civilian woman at Dallas Fire-Rescue ("DFR") filed a federal lawsuit with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") alleging that she was demoted recently after complaining about lewd e-mails and sexual harassment from higher-ups.
Attorney Aaron Ramirez is representing another woman at DFR who filed a similar lawsuit saying a superior "...would loudly carry on all sorts of graphic and inappropriate sexual conversations with anyone who would listen." "I don't think it's isolated at all,” said Ramirez. “We have three clients currently right now. I know there's a fourth one that came out yesterday. We've talked to at least five or six other women."

Ramirez said another female firefighter he represents filed an EEOC complaint alleging men urinated on her bedding and placed straight pins in it.
Posted On: April 4, 2009

Kennesaw Employees File Lawsuit Alleging Racial Discrimination

The racial comments began on Gary Redd’s first day on the job in Kennesaw’s public works department and they never let up according to his lawsuit. Redd, a native of Korea, said he was called “wetback,” “rice-eater” and “slant-eye.” Two years later, in 2008, he couldn’t take the racial harassment any longer and quit--which is referred to as constructive discharge.

Willie Smith says he has endured racist behavior since he was hired by Kennesaw in 1995. In 1996, he complained about nooses hanging from two city trucks. He says racial slurs like the n-word was used regularly by bosses and co-workers, and a “White Only” sign was taped to a bathroom stall.

Before retiring, the head of the public works department, Woody McFarlin, posted a picture of the old Georgia flag with a slice of watermelon on it. The caption read: “Now, here’s a flag that will appeal to ALL Georgians!” Smith kept reporting the racist behavior. “I couldn’t ever get nothing resolved,” he said.

Smith, Redd and Stanley Mitchell, a 22-year public works employee, filed a racial discrimination and harassment lawsuit against Kennesaw on March 9, 2009.

“I felt like something had to be done to stop this, so it wouldn’t go on with future generations,” Redd said.
Posted On: April 3, 2009

Gay employee files discrimination lawsuit against Easton Hospital

A Lower Saucon Township woman, Suzanne Cornish, filed a civil lawsuit against Easton Hospital claiming she was targeted by her superiors because of her sexual orientation and subsequently fired, according to her lawsuit. Cornish claims because she is gay she was harassed at work and hospital officials attempted to coerce her resignation through a "campaign of harassment", which constituted a hostile work environment.

Cornish who worked at the hospital in Wilson Borough as the director of the cardiology pulmonary unit, filed the lawsuit in federal court last week seeking lost salary, damages and attorney fees and to have her position reinstated, according to court records. Cornish alleges hospital officials found out about her sexuality at the end of May 2008 and she was fired Oct. 31. Cornish also claims she was given inaccurate performance reviews that led to her firing according to the Lehigh Valley News.

Posted On: April 2, 2009

EEOC Sues Illinois Elks Lodge For Sexual Harassment

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") is suing a southwestern Illinois Elks Lodge, alleging three board members sexually harassed three female bartenders. In its lawsuit (Case No. 3:09-cv-00200), filed in U.S. District Court in East St. Louis, Illinois, the EEOC claims that Vicki Vickers, Elizabeth Stemm, and Jackie Davidson (formerly Jackie Atteberry at the time of her employment by defendant) were subjected to unlawful sexual harassment while working at Elks Lodge No. 954 by three members of the Elks’ board of trustees on numerous occasions in 2005 and 2006.

The abuse, which the EEOC said was perpetrated by trustees Joe Ritter, Allen Dunham and Dennis Prough, included repeated unwelcome sexual advances and touching, and sexually explicit comments. The lawsuit said that after victims complained about the conduct, their work hours were cut, they were assigned the least desirable shifts, and they were subjected to threats and other abusive verbal comments. Davidson was terminated and a hostile work environment ensued in which Vickers was compelled to resign.

Employers have an absolute duty to prevent their employees from becoming the object of sexual abuse by people who are in a position of authority,” said James R. Neely, Jr., district director of the EEOC's St. Louis District Office
.

Posted On: April 1, 2009

Illinois Schnucks Employee Files Age Discrimination Lawsuit

Gary Rittenhouse had worked for the Belleville Schnucks Markets from Aug. 15, 1977, until his termination on May 15, 2007, according to the complaint filed Feb. 27 in St. Clair County Circuit Court. Rittenhouse, 44, alleges he was wrongfully terminated from his employment as an assistant manager because of his age--which is age discrimination. Rittenhouse began working for the company as a bagger and eventually worked his way up to assistant manager.

Because of his termination, Rittenhouse lost income, suffered a diminution in his employability and suffered humiliation and severe emotional distress that required medical and professional treatment, according to the complaint, which is in St. Clair County Circuit Court case number: 09-L-109.

"At the time of his termination, Rittenhouse was doing the job well enough to meet the employer's reasonable expectations," the suit states. "Rittenhouse was discharged in whole or in material part because of his age."

Rittenhouse is seeking a judgment in an amount that will fully compensate him, plus attorney's fees, costs and other relief the court deems appropriate.