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Sexual Harassment Cases in California: Real-Life Examples

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Do you think you might be a victim of sexual harassment? Sometimes harassment in the workplace can be recognized easily, but other times these negative employer behaviors are not as obvious.

It's important to know that if your employer is subjecting you to sexual harassment or willingly allows harassment by coworkers or supervisors in the workplace, your rights are protected under both California and Federal law. Unfortunately, even with the laws in place, the number of sexual harassment claims are still staggering. In fact, the EEOC reports that sex and gender charges (including sexual harassment) rose to nearly 30 percent in 2014.

sexual-harassment-in-california-real-cases.jpgDo you think you might be a victim of sexual harassment? Sometimes harassment in the workplace can be recognized easily, but other times these negative employer behaviors are not as obvious.

It's important to know that if your employer is subjecting you to sexual harassment or willingly allows harassment by coworkers or supervisors in the workplace, your rights are protected under both California and Federal law. Unfortunately, even with the laws in place, the number of sexual harassment claims are still staggering. In fact, the EEOC reports that sex and gender charges (including sexual harassment) rose to nearly 30 percent in 2014.

The following sexual harassment cases from the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing will help you understand your own employee rights, what constitutes sexual harassment, and how California citizens like you fought back against workplace sexual harassment and retaliation.

Real Examples of Sexual Harassment Cases in California

California Orders Fresno Business to Pay $45,000 for Sexual Harassment

ELK GROVE, CA - A Fresno cleaning company was ordered to pay $45,000 in damages and fines by the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing. The FEHC found RJL Group and President/CEO Raymond Lopez liable for sexually harassing an employee by the name of Nora Rose from whom they demanded sexual favors. The company was ordered to pay Rose $35,000 for emotional distress and $10,000 to the state for administrative fines.

"Employees should not have to choose between keeping a job and putting up with demands for sexual favors or a hostile work environment," said the Department of Fair Employment and Housing Director Phyllis Cheng.

DFEH Announces $50,000 Settlement of Sexual Harassment Suit Against National Construction Supply Company

ELK GROVE, CA - A settlement of a sexual harassment lawsuit filed against White Cap Construction Supply Company was announced by the DFEH. The construction company paid $50,000 to settle the claim from a purchasing agent and single mother who was sexually harassed by her manager. The employee was subjected to vulgar language, sexually explicit gestures, and unwanted touching. She even suffered from employer retaliation and was fired for complaining about the harassment.

"The Fair Employment and Housing Act protects Californians from unlawful workplace harassment," said DFEH Director Phyllis W. Cheng. "The DFEH will enforce the laws against sexual harassment and discrimination whenever such conduct is found."

Fair Employment and Housing Commission Awards $167,486 in Precedential Sexual Harassment and Hate Violence Case

SACRAMENTO, CA - The Fair Employment and Housing Commission awarded $167,486 in a precedential sexual harassment and hate violence case. The Commission concluded that Kurt J. Bottoms violated the Fair Employment and Housing Act by subjecting a female employee to both quid pro quo and hostile work environment sexual harassment. In addition to that, Bottoms violated the Ralph Civil Rights Act, California Civil Code section 51.7, which prohibits violence or threats of violence against persons or property because of their sex. Bottoms threatened the employee and her family with death if she did not cooperate with demands for sex, plus he stalked and intimidated her.

"We are extremely pleased with the outcome of this important case," stated DFEH Director Suzanne M. Ambrose. "The Commission's decision reiterates that sexual harassment and acts of violence will not be tolerated in California workplaces and emphasizes the importance of this department's ongoing education and outreach efforts as a means of preventing future cases."

State Secures $150,000 Sexual Harassment Settlement

ELK GROVE, CA - The DFEH announced a settlement of a sexual harassment lawsuit filed against the owners of Bakersfield, California's Esquire Cocktail Lounge. Bar owner, David Rubio, allegedly sexually harassed and assaulted a female bartender by the name of Christina McQuiston. The harassment involved taking photos of the employee without her permission, plus subjecting her to degrading, sexually-charged behaviors in which the owner asked patrons to be involved. Rubio even obstructed her path during work hours so he could rub up against her, as well as grabbed and assaulted McQuiston when they were alone in the back office as she stocked glasses.

The owners of the bar filed for bankruptcy in 2008, but agreed not to challenge the $150,000 claim for damages per the settlement agreement.

"This case illustrates the Department's commitment to vindicating civil rights even in the face of bankruptcy," said DFEH Director, Phyllis Cheng.

No one should have to worry about sexual harassment at work. Our California sex and gender harassment and discrimination attorneys will passionately fight for your rights and the financial compensation you deserve. Contact us today for your free consultation.

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