In Iowa, there is an expectation that anyone who has a job will be free of the looming problem of sexual harassment. It is against the law to subject people to this level of harassment in the workplace but, as the recent news has shown, that does not stop a significant number of people from partaking in the practice despite its illegality and the consequences that accompany it. This behavior is made worse when it happens to young people who are just starting out. Those who are affected by sexual harassment might not know where to turn or that they have certain rights. Understanding that the behavior is against the law and discussing the case with an attorney can provide information on how to move forward.
A bar is facing a lawsuit for allegations that workers at the establishment committed sexual harassment against two teens who worked there. The female teens had been hired as table runners in the late-summer of 2016. They assert that they faced harassment almost immediately. The lawsuit was recently filed. In it, they claim that a cook rubbed himself against one of them and grabbed her buttocks and breasts. He is also accused of locking the girls in the walk-in freezer after which he turned off the lights as other employees observed his behavior.
The girls say that they informed management of what was happening. The filing claims that three managers were aware of it and admitted as such, but nothing was done. Four months after complaining, the cook was told to stop speaking to them. Their hours were subsequently reduced and they were transferred to another location. They allege that management made it too difficult to continue working at the new location and they quit.
There are multiple forms of sexual harassment and it is important for people to understand how to recognize when it is taking place and their rights to put a stop to it. It does not necessarily limit itself to unwanted advances, inappropriate touching, lewd comments and similar acts that are generally associated with sexual harassment. Management is obligated to take steps to put a stop these behaviors. If it does not, it too will be accountable.
In this case, two teens state they were both subjected to various forms of harassment and ignored by management when they complained. They have filed a lawsuit. Those who are facing similar behaviors should also consider their options to file a case with advice from an attorney experienced in seeking compensation for sexual harassment.
Source: whotv.com, “West Des Moines Bar Faces Sexual Harassment Lawsuit,” Jodi Whitworth, Jan. 1, 2018