Sticking Your Head In The Sand Will Not Make Sexual Harassment Go Away
A health club employee alleges her sales manager sexually harassed her. She claimed that three days after she began working at the fitness center, the manager instructed her to bring a pen and paper and meet him in the parking lot. From there, he drove her to a restaurant. After drinking an alcoholic beverage there, he then brought her to a secluded parking lot where he kissed and fondled her and "made her touch him sexually."
The manager instructed the employee not to tell anyone what happened in the car. As a result, the woman has been unable to return to work.
The plaintiff also alleged the manager had sexually abused at least one other employee of the club prior to her assault. Stuart Goldman "Former LA Fitness Employee Claims She Was Sexually Harassed by Her Supervisor," www.clubindustry.com (Aug. 20, 2014).
Sexual harassment is unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. Sexual harassment is illegal when it is so frequent or severe that it creates a hostile or offensive work environment or results in an adverse employment decision.
The facts in the article do not reveal whether the employee had received sexual harassment training within her first three days, but it is unlikely she did or she would have known how to report harassment.
New employees should participate in an orientation session that covers all the workplace policies and procedures.
Employees should know what sexual harassment is and how to report it without fear of retaliation.
The employee in the article stopped coming to work. According to the EEOC, discriminatory practices under the law include constructive discharge or forcing an employee to resign by making the work environment so intolerable a reasonable person would not be able to stay.
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