Company Condones Harassment?
Q: Another employee asked how I was in bed and how my boyfriend, also an employee, was in bed. He made some comments as to how he thought I performed in bed. The next day he asked about our sex life in front of at least 3 people. The previous week he had asked what color underwear I wore. For the 2 1/2 years I've been working there, this same employee has made probably hundreds of similar comments. The general manager issued a warning and said if it happened again he would be fired and that no previous complaints had been made. However, a lady made a complaint a few months ago was made about his vulgar language that could be considered sexual. The general manager claimed she retracted it but she says she didn't. There have been MANY other complaints about this man other than sexual harassment. He is also married to his superior, the personnel manager, and many people have avoided complaining because of fear of retaliation from her.I myself was retaliated against a year ago (hours were cut) when I made a complaint of general harassment against this man. Also the general manager himself has only one sexual harassment incident on file but has made numerous sexual comments to many, including minors.
A:Under Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights act, an employer may be held liable for sexual harassment committed by a co-worker if the employer knowingly permitted a sexual hostile work environment to continue after being notified. The same federal statute that prohibits sexual harassment also prohibits retaliation against an employee who reports the harassment or opposes the pattern of sexual harassment. To preserve your claim for sexual harassment or retaliation, you need to consult with an employment lawyer to discuss timely administrative charge (statute of limitation can run anywhere from 180 days to 300 days).
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