Articles Tagged with sexual harassment

Let’s say that you have a zero-tolerance harassment code of conduct in place at your business. You have defined what the behavior is and educated the employees. It goes well beyond the obvious inappropriate behavior (touching, unwanted romantic overtures, sharing NSFW photos, graphic commentary on an individual’s appearance) to include just plain verbal harassment, quid pro quo sexual propositions for promotions, or behavior that creates a hostile work environment. You have made a point of educating the staff (both male and female members), but unfortunately these rules allegedly went out the window.

There are both state laws in Texas and federal laws that make the employer possibly liable for the behavior of a supervisor. These laws also apply to non-supervisors or even customers if the employers knew or should have known it was happening.

There are several steps the employer/owner should take immediately:

Texas residents who are familiar with Life Alert products that are marketed to elderly consumers may be surprised to learn that the company is being sued for age discrimination and sexual harassment. On May 6, a former employee of Life Alert Emergency Response Inc filed a $7 million lawsuit after he claims he was fired for his age, cancer diagnosis and objections to sexual harassment.

Life Alert is best known for its television ads that feature the slogan ‘Help, I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.” The company sells wearable devices that can be used by elderly and disabled people to call for assistance when they experience an emergency. The plaintiff in the lawsuit, who is now 71 years old, worked as a Life Alert sales manager and was employed by the company for 12 years.

According to the plaintiff’s discrimination claims, he was fired without warning on Nov. 10. The former Life Alert employee says that the firing came shortly after he had started radiation therapy for prostate cancer. He also says that he believes he was fired in retaliation for complaints he had made about employee misclassification and sexual harassment of female employees at the company. The company’s chief executive reportedly responded to the man’s complaints about sexual harassment by saying that nobody was forcing the women to stay.

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