As smartphones become ubiquitous, it is becoming increasingly hard to tell
whether someone is just talking to a friend or instead, stalking you.
It is a problem in the workplace as well, as a lawsuit filed earlier this
Wanda Tate-Linton, an African-American employee of the New Jersey Transit
Corp has filed a sexual harassment
lawsuit against the company, alleging that her supervisor took clandestine, so-called
upskirt photos and retaliated against her when he found out she sought
to report him.
In the lawsuit, filed on July 3 in a Pennsylvania federal court, the Philadelphia
woman claims she experienced sexual harassment and that New Jersey Transit
senior employees failed to protect her when she reported it. She said
the public transit company violated the Federal Employers Liability Act
and federal sexual discrimination laws when it allowed the harassment
to continue. The lawsuit also alleges that Tate-Linton was subjected to
retaliation when her supervisor found out that she was making inquiries
regarding her right to be free from the harassment.
As a result of the trauma stemming from the misconduct and the hostile
work environment, the Tate-Linton was forced to take a number of days
off, and the suit claims that she was cause serious emotional and financial
harms with physical manifestations, some of which may be permanent. She
is asking for compensatory and punitive damages.
Harassment is a form of employment discrimination that violates Title VII
of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment
Act of 1967, (ADEA), and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, (ADA).
Harassment is unwelcome conduct that is based on race, color, religion,
sex (including pregnancy), national origin, age (40 or older), disability
or genetic information. Harassment becomes unlawful where 1) enduring
the offensive conduct becomes a condition of continued employment, or
2) the conduct is severe or pervasive enough to create a work environment
that a reasonable person would consider intimidating, hostile, or abusive.
Anti-discrimination laws also prohibit harassment against individuals
in retaliation for filing a discrimination charge, testifying, or participating
in any way in an investigation, proceeding, or lawsuit under these laws;
or opposing employment practices that they reasonably believe discriminate
against individuals, in violation of these laws.
Offensive conduct may include, but is not limited to, offensive jokes,
slurs, epithets or name calling, physical assaults or threats, intimidation,
ridicule or mockery, insults or put-downs, offensive objects or pictures,
and interference with work performance.
The employer will be liable for harassment by non-supervisory employees
or non-employees over whom it has control (e.g., independent contractors
or customers on the premises), if it knew, or should have known about
the harassment and failed to take prompt and appropriate corrective action.
If you have been sexually harassed at your New York place of employment,
contact the attorneys at Schwartz and Perry LLP.