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Azadian Law Group
March 10, 2017

Goodwill Industries, a U.S. based nonprofit dedicated to providing employment placement services, job training, and other community-based support initiatives for individuals who have barriers preventing securing a job, has been named in a new sexual harassment lawsuit in California after allegations surfaced involving female janitorial staff.

According to court records, Goodwill Industries subjected several female employees to sexual harassment, in addition to subjecting disabled employees to different terms and conditions of employment. The claim specifically asserts that the supervisor on duty engaged in repeated sexually disturbing physical and verbal acts towards female staff, including making unwelcome sexually charged comments.

The lawsuit, filed by five employees, along with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), claims violations of both Federal and California law prohibiting sexual harassment, retaliation, and a hostile working environment. All women involved worked on the nighttime janitorial staff in California.

Although all women maintain that they repeatedly complained regarding this behavior, they allege that the employer continuously failed to end the harassment, or protect the female staff from a hostile work environment.

Sexual Harassment in the Workplace is Common in Los Angeles 

In the modern era, there is a general misconception that workplaces are devoid of sexual harassment or abuse. However, the fact remains that harassment in the workplace does happen, with one of the most common forms of harassment being sexual harassment.

Though sexual harassment typically involves harassment directed towards women, men can be victims as well. There are five common behaviors that qualify as sexual harassment in the workplace, including:

  • Threatening behavior – where an individual is threatened or rewarded in return for sexual favors
  • Physical harassment – any instance where a person is touched unwillingly
  • Verbal harassment – any attempt to turn workplace discussions into sexual discussions, or asking questions of a sexual nature
  • Non-verbal harassment – where a person makes sexual gestures towards another
  • Environmental harassment – situations where suggestive pictures or objects are put up around the workplace, often portraying men or women as sexual objects

There are both informal and formal options for those victimized by sexual harassment in the workplace. In some cases, simply discussing the behavior with the offender may suffice. In other cases, it may require bringing the harassment to the attention of your superior.

In cases where the harassment continues, or becomes too extreme, it may be appropriate to file a formal complaint with human resources. However, the best way to ensure that your rights are upheld in the workplace is to consult with a qualified employment attorney.

Los Angeles Employment Attorneys

Have you or someone you love been a victim of sexual harassment in the workplace? If so, the wrongful termination and sexual harassment lawyers at Azadian Law Group, PC can help.

Our legal team focuses on handling workplace-related issues, including those involving sexual harassment and retaliation due to complaints of harassment. Our firm has a great deal of experience in handling these types of cases and can guide your case with the highest degree of integrity and professionalism. No matter what the circumstances are surrounding your sexual harassment complaint, our employment lawyers are committed to standing by you and supporting you every step of the way.

Let us work with you to bring a swift resolution to your sexual harassment claim. To schedule a free initial consultation with our legal team, contact our law office today at 213-229-9031.

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