California employees may be interested to learn that a former call center worker in Iowa has won a $11.9 million jury verdict in her lawsuit against her employer. The former employee claimed that she and her female co-workers were referred to as “sluts” and “whores.” When she complained, she said she was fired.
The former employee began working at the call center as a customer service representative in April 2007. She claimed that two men, one of whom was a supervisor while the other was a co-worker, were involved in the harassment. Another co-worker, who filed her own lawsuit that is scheduled to go to trial in October, stated that the supervisor asked her about her sex life and told his office false medical information when she called in sick. She was ultimately fired in 2007 after making complaints about the situation. Once the co-worker left, the former employee stated that the harassment against her got worse.
Both men were eventually fired following an internal investigation. However, the main problem was the harassment went on for so long because neither women knew where to turn when the top supervisor was part of the problem. Although the verdict was awarded in this case, it was not known when the former employee would receive the damages as the company has gone to great lengths to avoid responsibility.
Offensive sexual comments in the workplace can make it very difficult for employees to get the work done. In some cases, the behavior may keep them from advancing in their careers or may cause them emotional pain. If there is evidence that harassment occurred, an attorney may assist with filing a lawsuit to seek damages for the emotional pain and suffering that was caused.
Source: USA Today, “