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Sexual Harassment Archives

Sexual harassment complaint against City Councilman Jose Huizar

In a sexual harassment, discrimination and retaliation complaint filed with California's Department of Fair Employment and Housing, Francine Godoy accuses Los Angeles City Councilman Jose Huizar of sexual harassment. Ms. Godoy, former deputy chief of staff, stated in her complaint that she was "subjected to sexual harassment [quid pro quo and hostile work environment] and retaliated against when I refused advances." Her complaint alleges that she was harassed and retaliated against for refusing to engage in sex with Councilman Huizar. Godoy further alleges that she was subjected to "impermissible, non-job-related questions," "a work environment [not] free of discrimination," termination and demotion and even a "sabotaged ability to run for office."

$1.5 million sexual harassment verdict against Police Officer

A Vista Superior Court jury awarded $1.5 million to a woman that claimed sexual harassment by an Oceanside police officer. According to Kimberli Hirst's complaint filed in 2010, she alleged that she was subjected to repeated, offensive and unwanted sexual behavior at work for several months, including sexual comments about her body and requests for sexual acts. Hirst worked for the city as a forensic phlebotomist. She alleged that the officer who harassed her did so in locked rooms at the Oceanside Police Department or at the Vista jail.

$1.5 million verdict in sexual harassment case

A verdict of $1.5 million was awarded recently in a sexual harassment case brought by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) against employer New Breed Logistics, a North Carolina-based logistics services provider. The verdict was rendered on behalf of four employees. It included awards of $177,094 in back pay and $486,000 in compensatory damages, as well as $850,000 in punitive damages.  Puntive damages are awarded to punish a company whose conduct is found to be malicious or wilfull.  

$1.25 Million Sexual Harassment Verdict

On August 5, 2013, a twelve person jury found Palm Desert real estate developer Suresh Shah guilty of sexually harassing Karen Moran.  Ms. Moran was a former leasing agent for Shah and the mall manager at the Town Center Mall in Yucca Valley.

Weak Sexual Harassment Claim May Still Support Retaliation Claim

Sexual harassment lawsuits against employers require the employee victim to show that the sexual misconduct was so severe or pervasive that it altered the conditions of employment and thereby created a hostile work environment.  A stray remark here or there is usually not enough to sustain a case. It is not enough that the employee herself be offended by the remarks. Rather, it must also be shown that a "reasonable person" would find the work environment to be "hostile or abusive." 

$20 Million Sexual Harassment Verdict

A federal jury awarded $20,251,963 to eight former employees of Four Amigos Travel, Inc. and Top Dog Travel, Inc., a Florida vacation agency with offices in Largo, Orlando and Lake Lauderdale, Fla., who suffered sexual harassment and retaliation. The verdict was announced by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) recently. It was alleged by the EEOC, which filed suit on behalf of the four employees, that travel agency owner R. Schlom and male managers working at Four Amigos / Top Dog's Largo facility subjected female employees to egregious sexual harassment every day. The harassment included unwanted sexual advances, physical touching and repeated propositions for sex (quid pro quo) in a work environment filled with sexual banter, abuse of power and disrespect for women. The company also fired a manager for bringing the victims' complaints forward, according to the suit.

Sexual Harassment is Damaging to Women's Health

Sexual harassment is a common, but sometimes under-recognized, workplace hazard that affects up to 70 percent of women and 45 percent of men in the workplace according to a noted a sociologist. Most often it involves a harasser creating a "hostile work environment." This occurs when an employee feels intimidated or uncomfortable due to persistent inappropriate sexual remarks and innuendo in the workplace. Harassment can also involve a "quid pro quo" scenario, where sexual favors are demanded in exchange for keeping one's job.

Sexual harassment victims often have survived other sexual abuse

A study has confirmed that childhood sexual abuse, adult sexual assault, intimate partner violence, and sexual harassment often occur in the same victims. (See Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology: A mediational model of posttraumatic stress disorder and physical health outcomes (April 2008)).

Details of san diego mayor's sexual harassment emerge

Details of San Diego Mayor Bob Filner 's sexual harassment of women have now emerged. These include the forcible kissing of two constituents and grabbing the buttocks and breast of a staff member. In a City Hall elevator, Filner told a female staffer that women employees would do better "if they worked without their panties on." It has been reported that Filner's behavior toward women was so egregious and despicable that women who worked for him called him a "dirty old man" and coined the phrases "the Filner headlock" and "the Filner dance" to describe how he isolates women and then makes unwanted advances.

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