Posted On: September 30, 2010

Fry's Electronics Sued For Sexual Harassment

Fry's Electronics is being sued for sexual harassment of a young female employee and retaliation for actions it took against her supervisor after he spoke out on her behalf. The lawsuit was filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") on behalf of America Rios. According to published documents an assistant manager began to sexually harass sales associate America Rios who was under 21 years old at the time. Rios repeatedly refused his advances but the harasser continually sent her sexually charged text messages with invitations to his house and offers of alcohol.

Rios reported the sexual harassment to her immediate supervisor, Ka Lam. Lam immediately spoke to upper management about the sexual harassment and was told to focus on his job and that some changes might be happening. A very short time after Lam reported the sexual harassment he was fired for poor performance, even though the EEOC found that he had never received a bad review and had consistently been promoted during his four years with the company.

“This was my first job,” said Rios. “I was overwhelmed, uncomfortable, stressed out, and I didn’t know what to do. I tried to let it go, but I felt violated and didn’t know how to pretend that nothing happened.”

“I worked hard for this company, and tried to do what was right by standing up for Ms. Rios,” said Lam. “Firing me for speaking out was wrong.”

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Posted On: September 29, 2010

McDonalds Franchise Pays $15,000 To Settle Sexual Harassment Lawsuit

A McDonald's franchise pays an female ex-employee $15,000 to resolve her sexual harassment lawsuit which also included a charge of retaliation. Published accounts claim that cashier Gladys Rivera was subjected to consistent sexual harassment by a male co-worker for several months. She claims that a supervisor and restaurant manager knew of the sexual harassment and did nothing to stop it. She kept complaining about the sexual harassment and was terminated because she would not stop complaining. This is called retaliation.

Rivera also alleged the same co-worker slapped her on the backside and said Rivera looks good. Although McDonalds denied that Rivera was sexually harassed, several witnesses interviewed by the human rights division supported Rivera's version of events. I suspect that the additional witnesses are what caused the company to settle the case. In Illinois you can file a claim of sexual harassment with the Illinois Department of Human Rights ("IDHR") and they will cross-file with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC").

Rivera alleged that a co-worker, Edwin Andujar of Newark, invited her to get together in private and "see how much of a man I am."

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Posted On: September 28, 2010

Roberts Truck Center Sued For Sexual Harassment and Retaliation

Roberts Truck Center is being sued for sexual harassment and retaliation by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC")on behalf of a class a female workers. According to published accounts of the sexual harassment, a co-worker employed by Roberts subjected Katherine Abernathy and a class of women, including at least three others, to sexual harassment. When the EEOC files a lawsuit based on a class of discriminated workers, there is usually a very good case. In this instance I believe this case is going to cost Roberts a great deal of money to settle.

Published documents allege the women were subjected to sexual comments, sexual innuendo and unwelcome touching of their bodies, which created a hostile work environment for them. Additionally, Abernathy suffered retaliation with respect to sales opportunities and in the terms and conditions of her employment because she opposed the sexual harassment. Abernathy was fired because she opposed the unlawful employment practices which is referred to as retaliation.

"Our investigation revealed that a co-worker of these women was permitted to harass them and Roberts Truck Center managers did not act promptly to provide corrective relief,” said EEOC attorney Rayford Irvin

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Posted On: September 27, 2010

Holiday Inn Sued For Sexual Harassment

The Holiday Inn is being sued by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") for sexual harassment. According to published accounts the Holiday Inn fired front desk clerk Beatriz Garcia for complaining about being sexually harassed by her boss. Firing her for reporting sexual harassment would be retaliation and is an additional charge that Holiday Inn is being charged with. According to the complaint, Garcia was subjected of unwelcome touching, sexual comments and threats in response to complaining about the sexual harassment from a supervisor.

Garcia was fired in retaliation for complaining about the harassment to Holiday Inn management and faced further retaliation for filing a complaint with the EEOC. This type of behavior is not tolerated and what really makes things bad is her former manager at the Holiday Inn called her new employer in an attempt to warn him about Garcia and obtain her new contact information. This type of activity will be the undoing of the case for Holiday Inn and I suspect they will settle rather than go to trial.

"I came to this country to work hard and achieve the American Dream. Soon after being promoted, I realized that the promotion came at a price I did not want to pay. I could not continue to work where I was being treated as a sexual object." Garcia said.
"By law, employers must protect their workers and take responsibility for the actions of their supervisors," said EEOC attorney William Tamayo.

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Posted On: September 26, 2010

IHOP Pays $105,000 In Sexual Harassment Lawsuit

Two waitresses who were sexually harassed by a manager when they worked at the International House of Pancakes ("IHOP") were awarded $105,000 by a jury in their sexual harassment lawsuit. Both women were teenagers when they worked at IHOP and their manager Rosalio Gutierrez sexually harassed them. According to their testimony at trial both women complained about comments, touching and sexual propositions by the manager. Gutierrez has since left IHOP and his current occupation is not known.

The restaurant did nothing to Gutierrez and fired one of the females. This type of behavior is not only wrong but ended up costing the company a great deal of money. The lawsuit was filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") on behalf of the two females. This type of behavior also creates a hostile work environment for all employees.

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Posted On: September 25, 2010

T.A. Loving Company Settles Religious Discrimination Lawsuit For $47,500

T.A. Loving Company settles a religious discrimination lawsuit for $47,500. The lawsuit was filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") on behalf of Elvis Cifuentes and two other workers. The men worked as laborers and were fired for refusing to work on their Sabbath. Cifuentes Angel and the other laborers are members of the Seventh-Day Adventist faith, which prohibits work on a member’s Sabbath, which runs from sundown on Friday until sundown on Saturday.

Companies need to make reasonable accomodations for workers and if they don't it will cost them time and money. As you can see, in the end the company had to pay and what was the point. Workers have many rights and they need to exercise them when they believe they are the victim of discrimination.

“Employers must respect employees’ sincerely held religious beliefs and carefully consider requests made by employees based on those beliefs,” said EEOC attorney Lynette A. Barnes.

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Posted On: September 24, 2010

Mineral Met Pays $440,000 To Settle Retaliation Lawsuit

Mineral Met pays $440,000 to settle a racial discrimination and retaliation lawsuit filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"). According to published accounts, a class of black employees was subjected to racial hostility and discriminatory behavior at Mineral Met’s Cleveland facility. The examples of the discrimination are plentyful. Quality Control Supervisor Langston Satterwhite had an excellent work history, but a white supervisor unfairly disciplined him for trivial matters, such as having facial hair or using a cell phone, even though white co-workers were not reprimanded for doing the same things.

Satterwhite complained to upper management about the racial discrimination he and other black employees experienced, but these complaints only resulted retaliation. Also once Satterwhile came forward and complained the company moved his office from the second floor, where other managers worked, and placed him in the basement with his subordinates. This type of behavior is obviously discriminatory and one has to wonder what the company was thinking. At the end of the day, companies are going to be held accountable for their actions and should think twice about how they handle situations.

“I am very pleased that Mineral Met has agreed to a settlement that not only remedies the harmed individuals, but implements policies preventing reoccurrence of such egregious behavior,” said EEOC Attorney Debra Lawrence.

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Posted On: September 23, 2010

Dentist Sued For Sexual Harassment

Smile Brands a dental company was sued for sexual harassment by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"). According to the lawsuit two female employees were subjected to a sexually hostile work environment and to sexual harassment by the lead dentist David Mikitka. The lawsuit claims dental hygienist Deanna Chaney and dental assistant Jan Pawelek were subjected to unwanted sexual conduct shortly after they started working.

The sexual harassment included unwanted sexual comments, touching and making sexual comments about female patients. Pawelek and Chaney repeatedly told the dentist to stop his unwanted sexual behavior but he ignored their multiple requests. Once the dentist refused to stop the sexual harassment both women complained to management but management failed to conduct a proper investigation and to stop the harassment. This type of behavior is not appropriate in the workplace and will probably result in a settlement that will cost the dental company a substantial amount of money. Also the negative publicity will cost the dental company business as most females will not want to have their dental work performed in such an environment.

“A medical or dental office is a place where both employees and patients should feel safe from sexually-charged comments or assessments,” said EEOC Attorney Robert Canino

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Posted On: September 22, 2010

Pregnancy Discrimination Lawsuit Settled For $130,000

Southwest Dental Group settles pregnancy discrimination lawsuit with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") for $130,000. Published accounts claim that an upper-level member of management made inquiries during interviews of female applicants regarding their marital status; whether they were or planning to become pregnant; and if they had children. All of these questions are not appropriate and should not be asked during a job interview.

That was bad enough by also three former female employees were either demoted, discharged or forced to resign as a result of their pregnancies. This shows a clear pattern of discrimination by the company. One of those female employees was even discharged during her pregnancy. Another was demoted and ultimately discharged after she was unable to follow the manager’s instruction to take only two weeks of maternity leave following an unanticipated C-section. Upon return from maternity leave, a third female employee was forced to resign after she was demoted from her prior position of assistant manager to that of a clerk tasked with passing out flyers in a parking lot. When a person is forced to resign it is also referred to as a constructive discharge.

“The question of whether or not a woman is pregnant, wants to have children or already has them, cannot play a role in an employer’s decision to hire,” said Anna Park EEOC attorney.

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Posted On: September 21, 2010

EEOC Settles ADA Lawsuit For $47,500

Evans Solutions which is an alternative school will pay $47,500 to settle an American With Disabilities Act ("ADA") lawsuit with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"). According to accounts of the lawsuit Evans Solutions discharged a school social worker diagnosed with breast cancer because it regarded her as disabled, even though she had a solid work record with the company. That kind of behavior by a company is ridiculous and I am glad the EEOC made the company pay.

The employee Doris Bennett was a capable school social worker who informed her employer that she had been diagnosed with stage-zero breast cancer. In response, Bennett’s supervisor prepared an e-mail for Evans’ chief of staff which gave details about Bennett’s breast cancer and recommended that another school social worker be hired for the following academic year. Defendant let her go at the end of the year.

“We are pleased with the relief provided by the consent decree,” said Dale Price, the EEOC attorney. “It provides meaningful relief to Ms. Bennett and protections for the employees of Evans Solutions. It also reminds employers that they cannot make employment decisions based on fears and stereotypes about people with cancer.”

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Posted On: September 20, 2010

Sooner Copy Machines Pays $97,000 in Sexual Harassment Lawsuit

Joy Savoia won $97,000 this week from a federal jury in her sexual harassment, and hostile work environment lawsuit against Sooner Copy Machines Inc. and owner John Miller. According to published records, Savoia accused Miller of making repeated sexual advances to her at work. She only worked 13 days on the job, because she confronted Miller about his inappropriate actions. It turns out that was an expensive 13 days for Sooner Copy Machines.

Cases like this are usually supported with witnesses who can back up the statements of the person complaining of sexual harassment. In this case there were others who came forward and supported the claim. I hope Sooner Copy Machines learns a valuable lesson and puts better policies in place. I am sure they could have settled this case for less money before trial and should have.

"We established a pattern of behavior,” said attorney Gowens

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Posted On: September 17, 2010

Illinois Company Roadway Express Pays $10 Million To Settle Racial Discrimination Lawsuit

Roadway Express and YRC, Inc. will pay $10 million to settle a racial discrimination lawsuit which was filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"). According to details which have been published, the company subjected black employees at its Chicago Heights, Ill., and Elk Grove Village, Ill., facilities to a racially hostile working environment and racial discrimination in terms and conditions of employment. There seems to be an increase in discrimination cases in the Chicago area and in Illinois.

The EEOC claimed black employees were subjected to multiple incidents of hangman’s nooses, racist graffiti, racist comments, and racist cartoons. Additionally black employees were subjected to harsher discipline and scrutiny than their white counterparts. Discipline for employees should be the same and when an entire class of employees is disciplined differently, it usually means there is some discrimination taking place.

“No one should have to endure degrading racial harassment in order to earn a living,” said P. David Lopez, General Counsel of the EEOC.

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Posted On: September 16, 2010

Plastics Manufacturer Settles Gender Discrimination Lawsuit For $170,000

Polycon Industries, a plastics product manufacturer pays $170,000 to settle a gender discrimination lawsuit which was filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"). The lawsuit was filed by the EEOC on behalf of female employees who were not getting promoted to production positions which earn more money.

According to the allegations in the lawsuit Polycon illegally considered gender when placing new hires into entry-level positions, to the detriment of female new hires, who were overwhelmingly placed into lower-paying entry-level jobs. In cases like this the documents available through human resources can make or break the case. Either the evidence will show discrimination or it won't--in this case it obviously did.

“Despite the Commission’s 45-year existence, some employers still make the mistake of basing job placement decisions on gender, said EEOC Attorney Laurie Young.

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Posted On: September 15, 2010

Hospital Worker Gets $50,000 To Settle Retaliation and Religious Discrimination Lawsuit

A San Juan hospital pays $50,000 to settle a religious discrimination and retaliation lawsuit filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") on behalf of Javier Gonzalez-Torres. According to published accounts of the lawsuit, Torres claims the hospital failed to accomodate his religious beliefs. Torres worked at the hospital as a registered nurse and told the hospital that he could not cut his hair because of his religion, Santeria.

The hospital refused to allow him to wear his hair long, even though the hospital has a policy allowing female employees to wear their hair any length. If that weren't bad enough the hospital retaliated against Gonzalez-Torres by firing him after he complained about the discrimination. There seem to more be men filing discrimination charges with the EEOC. I don't know why the hospital would have a problem letting a man have the same length of hair a women does.

“Employers must reasonably accommodate employees’ religious beliefs and practices, and there is no gender distinction for that,” said EEOC Attorney Michael O’Brien.

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Posted On: September 14, 2010

Television Station Settles Gender Discrimination Lawsuit

A gender discrimination and age discrimination lawsuit against television station KMBC has been settled. The lawsuit was filed by Kelly Eckerman, Peggy Breit and Maria Albisu-Twyman alleging a pattern of discrimination and harassment of veteran female reporters. According to documents filed in the lawsuit the station’s atmosphere has transformed over time, from one of cooperation into a hostile work environment, permeated with threats, intimidation and disrespect.

The lawsuit paints a pretty nasty picture for the work environment at KMBC. Another claim in the lawsuit was that even unaffected newsroom employees have commented about the publicly humiliating and degrading treatment of women over 40. Sounds like KMBC has a lot of work to do internally. It is unusual for a high profile television show to have these sorts of employment issues. The three woman in this case stood up for their rights and didn't back down to the big corporation. The details of the settlement are unknown but the woman continue to work at the station.

A statement issued by KMBC described the resolution as “amicable” and said that it had come “after some open and frank conversation” between the women and station management.

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Posted On: September 12, 2010

Former Barn Manager Awarded $930,000 In Retaliation Lawsuit

A jury awarded Keri Gall, a former barn manager $930,000 after finding that her termination from the Funny Farm Inc., was retaliation for reporting sexual harassment. According to published articles, Gall claimed another male worker tried to hug her and kiss her on the lips during her employment. Gall reported the sexual harassment to the owner who terminated her 6 1/2 weeks later.

Maybe the best piece of evidence was the fact that only five days before being fired the owner offered Gall a $70,000 severance package if she left voluntarily. That offer was not accepted. You can see by the size of the severance package that the owner must have felt there was a strong case for the sexual harassment. This award seems very high but you have to realize that she was terminted and depending on how long it takes to find a job and what the income level was, the damages can add up. Also in this case the jury awarded a large amount in punitive damages.

Gall said she was "very happy" with the award. "I would have loved to let go and move on," she said. "It was something I had to do for my family."

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Posted On: September 11, 2010

Applebee's Sued For Gender Discrimination By The EEOC

Applebee’s is being sued for gender discrimination for denying a promotion to a qualified female employee. The lawsuit was filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") and alleges Amanda Antisdel worked as a server for Applebee’s and throughout her employment at Applebee’s, Antisdel excelled as a server. When she learned of an upcoming open bartender position she immediately informed the restaurant’s bar manager of her interest in the position. The bar manager assured Antisdel that as soon as the job became open she would be selected. The bar manager also permitted Antisdel to train behind the bar with the other bartenders for about three weeks.

A few weeks later she learned that Applebee’s recruited a less qualified male for the open bartending position and placed him in the position. Although Antisdel met all the qualifications for the position and was the most qualified person for the position and had more seniority than the male employee, the company recruited and selected him because Applebee’s wanted a straight male behind the bar. This type of activity is illegal, if proven and will cost Applebee's some cash.

“Denying a person a promotion because of her sex is unjust and unlawful,” said Lynette A. Barnes, EEOC attorney.

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Posted On: September 10, 2010

School Sued For Age Discrimination

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") filed an age discrimination lawsuit against Thomasville City Schools. According to the lawsuit Thomasville failed to hire Arlene Lent for two assistant principal positions because of her age in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (ADEA). If a worker is over 40 years of age, the ADEA kicks in.

The lawsuit alleges Thomasville Schools selected two younger, less qualified candidates for assistant principal positions over Lent because of her age, 54. Lent met all of the minimum qualifications for the positions while neither of the younger candidates who were selected met the qualifications. As an example, neither of the selectees who were 39 and 35 years of age, respectively, held a principal’s license. Employers often leave a paper trail in age discrimination cases and in this csae the qualifications of Lent and the other two candidates was the paper trail.

“Too often, age bias is the determining factor in hiring decisions and older applicants are simply written off and not given a fair chance to compete,” said Lynette A. Barnes, attorney for the EEOC. “Employers cannot refuse to hire qualified older workers because of their age; it is illegal as well as unfair and counterproductive.”

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Posted On: September 8, 2010

Illinois Church Ordered To Pay $63,045 In Sexual Harassment Case

Cheryl Lockard is awarded $63,045 in her sexual harassment and retaliation case against the Rev. Keith Jones and the First Baptist Church of Canton Illinois. The Illinois Human Rights Commission declined further review of a matter in which administrative law judge Michael Robinson ruled in favor of Lockard and issued the award. Lockard is a former employee of the church and claims she was sexually harassed by Jones and once she reported the sexual harassment the church engaged in retaliation and fired her.

The church appealled the decision by Judge Robinson with the Illinois Human Rights Commission and the Commission upheld Judge Robinson's order. Along with paying Lockard $63,045 the Church and Jones must also pay her attorney fees, issue a neutral job reference letter and clear her work record. It is unusual to file an appeal with the Illinois Human Rights Commission because of the cost involved (in legal fees) and the narrow avenue for having the Judge's ruling overturned.

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Posted On: September 7, 2010

Interior Decorator Settles Sexual Harassment Case for $250,000

It looks like being an interior decorator is a pretty good way to make a living-that is if you have ties to the housing authority. According to published reports, the Philadelphia Housing Authority ("PHA") will pay through its' insurance company $250,000 to settle a sexual harassment claim against executive director Carl R. Greene. The claim was first filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") by Elizabeth Helm, 29, a former interior decorator with PHA. According to her allegations Greene made advances including touching, grabbing, and groping her. Helm repeatedly told Greene to stop but Greene continued to forcibly and physically pursue inappropriate and unwanted contact of an intimate nature with her.

Because of this sexual harassment Helm was advised by her doctor not to return to work. She requested a medical leave, but was denied one by PHA. Because she was denied she took her vacation time and when it was exhausted and she did not return to work, PHA stopped paying her. She then applied for unemployment and PHA engaged in retaliation by fighting her claim. Fighting unemployment when allegations like this are brought to the attention of management is just stupid. It only makes the person want to pursue a claim and makes the amount available to them in damages increase. Additionally, if a person is unable to continue at work because of the discriminatory actions that are taking place at work, it is called a constructive discharge.


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Posted On: September 6, 2010

Former Moline Illinois Public Library Worker Gets $1 Million for Retaliation Lawsuit

Mary Clark a former Moline Public Library worker settled her retaliation lawsuit with the city of Moline for $1 million. According to published reports Clark who worked for the library for 24-years, claimed Leslie Kee a retired library director fired her in retaliation for complaints she made against the director. It all started back in 2008 when Clark complained to the library board alleging Kee was creating a hostile work environment, and acting in a vulgar and offensive manner. The lawsuit claimed that Kee and the City of Moline were discriminating based on sexual harassment, racial discrimination and national origin. In cases like this it is not unusual to have multiple claims of discrimination. She is basically saying I complained about all these types of behavior and as a result I was retaliated against by being fired.

After the complaint to the board Kee was reprimanded for her behavior and one month later, Kee recommended to the library board that Clark’s position be eliminated to save money. Clark was fired and based on the close proximity to her complaint, one could see the retaliation. The city was fighting the lawsuit but statements began to emerge that hurt the city's case and they decided to settle. You can see how important it is to have documents that are favorable to your case. In this case, a million dollar settlement was reached because of the documents.

“The city and insurance company were surprised and disappointed by the content of those statements,” city officials said.

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Posted On: September 5, 2010

Female State Police Officer Sues For Sexual Harassment

Ann Marie LaFauci a State Police office worker filed a sexual harassment lawsuit, alleging that a female lieutenant continually flirted with her, then bullied and threatened her after she rejected the advances. According to the lawsuit LaFauci claims Detective Lieutenant Barbara J. Bennett repeatedly called her “girlfriend,’’ once joked that she should wear a thong to work, and often insisted the two be alone for lunch or while driving to meetings. Bennett married her longtime female companion in 2004 after Massachusetts legalized same-sex marriage. Bennett serves as the State Police liaison to the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender community.

This is an unusual case as it not only involves sexual harassment but also sexual orientation discrimination and woman on woman sexual harassment. LaFauci alleges that she was upset by the overtures and told Bennett to stop at which point Bennett cut her hours, unfairly disciplined her, and told her, “Who knows, AnnMarie, accidents happen, they could find you in the back parking lot with blood pouring out of your head.’’ All of those would constitute retaliation and should not happen in the workplace.

“The way she was treating me was almost like a jealous ex- boyfriend being overpossessive,’’ said LaFauci, adding that she was once ordered to fetch toiletries from Bennett’s locker. “And when I told her I couldn’t be treated that way, she snapped.’’


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Posted On: September 4, 2010

Chrysler Pipefitter Awarded $4.2 Million In National Origin Discrimination Lawsuit

A Rockford Illinois federal court jury found in favor of pipefitter Otto May and ordered Chrysler to pay $4.2 million to the 60-year-old. According to court testimony May endured years of harassment based on his national origin. The harassment included hateful graffiti and death threats over his Jewish and Cuban-American ethnicity. Additionally, May had his tires shredded in the parking lot by co-workers as part of the ongoing harassment. He was even denied the same overtime opportunities as other similarly situated employees.

The jury listened to the evidence for a week and awarded May $709,000 in compensatory damages and $3.5 million in punitive damages. It is nice to see someone stand up and fight back when they are being discriminated against at work. This type of discrimination at work creates a hostile work environment and makes it difficult to function.

Mr. May showed extraordinary courage and determination which paid off in the end. This case should act as a warning to companies who refuse to protect workers when they are being subjected to harassment of any kind. Congratulations Mr. May.

"I'm glad the jury believed me," said May


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Posted On: September 3, 2010

Proving Sexual Harassment In The Workplace

I get calls all the time regarding sexual harassment in the workplace and the most difficult question to answer is how are we going to prove you were the victim of sexual harassment. Most people who engage in sexual harassment are clever and aware of what they are doing. They usually don't leave a large trail of evidence behind them. Now on occasion you would be surprised at how much evidence is left. Some people write long emails or leave damning text messages, but for the most part, the conversations are verbal and one-on-one. So how do you prove a one-on-one conversation?

Well the actual conversation may be hard to prove but there will usually be other pieces of evidence that go along with the conversation. But regarding the conversation, you could always tell the person to call you and leave you a message regarding what was said to be sure you heard him right. Or after the person said all of the stuff to you one-on-one, you could write the person an email and say is this what you said to me, it was so unusual and unexpected I was taken off guard sorry if I acted like I did. Remember the point isn't to set the person up but rather to get them to admit what they already said to you in person.

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Posted On: September 2, 2010

ABM Settles Sexual Harassment Lawsuit For $5.8 Million

ABM Industries Inc., pays the large amount of $5.8 million to 21 female former employees to settle a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC"). According to published accounts, one employee was actually raped by a supervisor while others were subjected to indecent exposure, groping, asking for sex and trading sex for promotions. This supervisor was out of control and you wonder who was managing him.

It is hard to imagion that this type of outrageous behavior and criminal activity was occuring at a place of business and top management did not know about it. This goes to show you how detached management can be from the day-to-day activities of its' business. You wonder why they call themselves management--what were they managing? In cases like this, once an investigation begins by an outside agency, the truth comes out and usually there is more than one victim. If management were doing its job, this could have been stopped with victim one and the others could have avoided all of the heartache and financial burden caused by the sexual harassment.

“We commend ABM for addressing what we found to be a grave and ominous situation for its female staff,” EEOC AttorneyPark said

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Posted On: September 1, 2010

Abercrombie & Fitch Sued For Religious Discrimination

Clothing retailer Abercrombie & Fitch, Co. violated federal law when it refused to hire a Muslim job applicant because she wore a hijab (religious head scarf), the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission ("EEOC") charged in a religious discrimination lawsuit filed today.

In March 2008, the 18-year-old female applied for a job stocking merchandise at the “Abercrombie Kids” store at the Great Mall in Milpitas, Calif. In accordance with her religious beliefs, she wore a colorful headscarf to her interview. According to the EEOC, the Abercrombie & Fitch manager asked if she was Muslim and required to wear a head scarf, then marked “not Abercrombie look” on the young woman’s interview form. The EEOC’s suit alleges that Abercrombie & Fitch refused to accommodate the applicant’s religious beliefs by granting an exception to its “Look Policy,” an internal dress code that includes a prohibition against head coverings.

“This was the first job I ever applied for, and I was excited about the idea of working for Abercrombie & Fitch,” said the job applicant. “I was into fashion, and wore skinny jeans and imported scarves that matched my outfits. The interview crushed me because I never imagined anyone in the Bay Area would reject me because of my head scarf. To this day, I can't walk into Abercrombie & Fitch stores. They didn't just miss out on a hard worker, they lost a customer.”

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