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EEOC: Sexual harassment in the workplace improperly handled

A lawsuit currently pending in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California alleges that a multibillion-dollar property management company erred in the way they handled the sexual harassment claim of an employee at their Squaw Valley resort. The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) filed the suit accusing the employer of failure to take prompt corrective action when the employee, a server and bartender, reported unwanted touching and sexual advances from 2005 through 2007.

Although the company did eventually separate the two workers, the EEOC says this was not done quickly enough and that it resulted in the woman being transferred with fewer hours and lower seniority. The other party in the harassment suit kept his seniority as well as his position with the company.

Sexual harassment in the workplace is prohibited under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. This act also makes it illegal for employers to retaliate against an employee who reports sexual harassment. Although the details are unknown, it's also believed that the harassment was related to a subsequent break-in at the woman's house.

California employees who are dealing with sexual harassment in the workplace deserve to be able to report the occurrences without fear of retaliation, and to have them taken seriously by company management. Sexual harassment claims can result in uncomfortable and tricky situations, and the advice and guidance of an experienced sexual harassment attorney could be invaluable during this time.

An attorney with specific experience in handling these types of claims may be able to resolve the situation with minimal workplace disruption and the employees' job still intact. The lawyer may also answer important questions and assist in seeking full accountability for an employee subjected to a hostile work environment due to the wrongful conduct of others.

Source: The KCRA Sacramento's Channel 3, "Squaw Valley Operator Tied To Sexual Harassment Suit," Sept. 29, 2011

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