The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission won a $1.26 million dollar
verdict in a
sexual harassment case against Paul's Big M grocery store after proving 10 years of
misconduct by the a former general manager during a two-week trial.
The lawsuit centered around a class of female employees, several of whom
were high school teenagers, at the upstate New York grocery store, according
to the EEOC press release. The award of $1,260,080 was comprised of $1.25
million in punitive damages and $10,080 in compensatory damages.
The offending manager, allegedly repeatedly sexually harassed females at
his store until he was fired in 2010, even after pleading guilty to criminal
charges of harassment in 2008, according to the EEOC. The EEOC claimed
the sexual conduct included proposing sexual encounters with the mother
of a teenage cashier, putting his tongue in a teenage cashier's mouth,
and the grabbing and touching of female employees.
According to the EEOC, although complaints were made about the harassment,
the working environment continued without remedy, forcing some female
employees to quit. The EEOC stated that the verdict is a strong message
to employers to ensure non-discriminatory working conditions, especially
where teenagers are involved.
More information is available