According to a sexual harassment lawsuit filed against the HoneyBaked Ham Company of Georgia, female employees in the company’s Colorado stores were repeatedly subjected to unwanted sexual comments and physical touching by their regional manager. According to the lawsuit, female employees who complained were fired or otherwise retaliated against. In fact, the lawsuit began with a former supervisor who alleged she was terminated for complaining about the harassment.
The former supervisor explained that the general manager requested sex, fondled female workers, and commented on their bodies. When she and other female employees were harassed, she reported the harassment to management and followed the chain of command all the way to corporate headquarters, but nothing was done. Instead, the company fired the complaining supervisor.
Following an investigation, the company agreed to pay $370,000 to settle the lawsuit. Sexual harassment and retaliation for complaining about it violate Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. In addition to paying the victims, HoneyBaked Ham has agreed to train all employees to watch for and avoid sexual harassment. Additionally, managers will receive training on handling sexual harassment and how to respond to complaints.
According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”), sexual harassment remains a real problem in many workplaces, and employers need to be very careful to respond to sexual harassment complaints and take them seriously. Workers who report sexual harassment should not have to suffer the added indignity of retaliation for speaking the truth about inappropriate and illegal behavior.
In this case, the employer refused to address the problem until attorneys got involved and a lawsuit was file. Despite the obvious, sometimes that is what it takes.
If you feel that you are being sexually harassed or are working in a sexually charged or hostile working environment, you should not wait to call the right attorney at 866-797-6040 to schedule a free and confidential consultation. At the Spitz law firm, you will meet with a sexual harassment lawyer/hostile work environment attorney to find out what your legal rights are and the best way to protect them. Sexual harrassment is a former of gender discrimination, and employers should be held accountable if they discriminate against female workers in any fashion – but particularly for sexual harrassment.
The materials available at this gender discrimination and employment law website are for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. It is best contact an Ohio sexual harassment attorney/hostile work environment lawyer to obtain advice with respect to sexual harassment/hostile work environment questions or any particular employment law issue. Use and access to this employment law website or any of the links contained within the site do not create an attorney-client relationship. The legal opinions expressed at or through this site are the opinions of the individual lawyer and may not reflect the opinions of the Spitz law firm or any individual attorney.