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Posted On: September 27, 2009 by Peter M. LaSorsa

Starbucks Sued For Sexual Harassment

A 29-year-old former starbucks employee filed a sexual harassment lawsuit alleging that young male co-workers consistently sexually harassed her by putting bananas between their legs as well as placing them in napkin dispensers. The woman alleges in her lawsuit that the males also wrote in the bathrooms using bananas as phallic symbols with one directed at her and inscribed with a particularly offensive remark.

The behavior began in 2008 when the store began selling fruit smoothies. The woman was also the victim of a sexual assault that same year. According to the lawsuit the sexual harassment was reported on many occasions but management failed to take any action or to stop the sexual harassment from continuing. The woman quit in November 2008 because she could no longer tolerate the hostile work environment. In a statement Starbucks claims it has a policy that strictly prohibits discrimination or sexual harassment in the workplace.

I see a lot of sexual harassment at fast food or mom and pop type restaurants and coffee shops. I believe one reason that nothing is done to prevent this type of behavior once reported is that most smaller operations don't have the proper procedures in place to handle the situations once they arise. Larger chains may have the procedures in place but the local management don't seem to be trained properly on the importance of handling the claims of sexual harassment properly. Lasoraslaw.com has more information on sexual harassment.

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