Ms. Lipton, who is now an attorney, alleges that the evening shift manager
at Sutton Place Restaurant and Bar, asked her in the presence of other
employees how much she weighed and even went so far as to mandate that
she lose weight. Ms. Lipton also claims that she was subjected to unwelcome
sexual harassment by offering her massages on a frequent basis and asking
her about pornographic movies. Additionally, Ms. Lipton alleges that the
manager would not let her eat during her shift, which was, at times, as
long as 10 hours. According to Ms. Lipton's complaint, her supervisor
allegedly made comments about the restaurant's female patrons by saying
things like, "She's a stupid [expletive], she's ugly, she's
fat, she's disgusting, get her the [expletive] out of here."
Ms. McRedmond, who is now a teacher, makes similar allegations, claiming
that he made disgusting sexual comments and touched her inappropriately
during her shifts at the restaurant. Additionally, Ms. McRedmond alleges
that, after repeatedly asking her what she weighed, she was forcibly picked
up and put on the scale to settle a poll among the male employees about
how much she weighed. When Ms. McRedmond refused to get on the scale,
she claims she was told she could not leave the manager's office until
she got weighed.
Sutton Place Restaurant and Bar denies any unlawful conduct and maintains
that the two women were terminated due to documented performance issues.
The restaurant claims that Ms. McRedmond's performance deficiencies
included sending text messages and eating without permission during her shift.
The manager claims that the he had a friendly relationship with Ms. McRedmond
and that, according to the court documents, would "often joke around
with me about my weight, grab my stomach in connection therewith and also
joke about [his] accent." Sutton Place Restaurant and Bar admits
that a scale was brought into the restaurant by two male employees who
were trying to lose weight. The restaurant does not dispute that Ms. McRedmond
may have been asked to get on the scale but categorizes it as "a
lighthearted exchange . . ."
The Appellate Division affirmed that a jury should decide the claims brought
by Ms. McRedmond and Ms. Lipton. The women's claims include sexual
harassment, sexual discrimination, battery, hostile work environment,
retaliation and unlawful imprisonment. According to the complaint, Ms.
McRedmond and Ms. Lipton collectively seek $15 million in compensatory
and punitive damages from their former employer.