Articles Posted in Uncategorized

In a text Order entered May 20, the Middle District of Louisiana confirmed that Weldon Moore’s claims of racial harassment and retaliation will go to trial, which was previously scheduled to begin July 22.

Order

Lead Counsel Shilpa Narayan successfully led the charge to challenge Excel’s efforts to have Mr. Moore’s case dismissed. For his part, Mr. Moore has withstood the challenges of litigation, fighting for justice for more than three years to have his day in court.

Read more about the case here: https://www.sexualharassmentlawyerblawg.com/excel-usa-management-testimony-reveals-retaliatory-treatment-of-african-american-employee-who-filed-racial-discrimination-suit-weldon-moore-v-excel-contractors-llc-d-b-a-excel-usa-321-cv-00698-j/

Friedman & Houlding LLP represents a current employee of Southwestern Central School District (“Southwestern”) who complained multiple times to higher-ups about continuing sexual harassment from his coworker without any follow-up, according to the Charge he filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Two different principals on two separate occasions failed to address the male teacher’s complaints of ongoing harassment, and instead flipped the duty on the employee to do what he (“Charging Party”) could to avoid further harm – seemingly a different standard from what would have been applied were the alleged perpetrator male and the victim female.

Southwestern Superintendent Maureen Donahue later admitted, after the harassment continued for well over a year after Charging Party first complained to his school principal, that the Southwestern “should’ve stopped this sooner,” according to our client’s Charge. The Charge raises the question of whether Southwestern would have acted sooner had the complaining teacher been female.

The harassment was well beyond verbal to the point that the harasser was stalking Charging Party both in and out of school. The harassing teacher’s unwanted attention manifested in constant, unwanted physical interference of the Charging Party’s day-to-day activities. As described in his Charge, the harasser relentlessly waylaid the Charging Party throughout the school building, even in his own classroom, with unwelcome presents of pussy willow, notes of love songs, cards, poems, and, on at least one occasion, a bottle of Obsession cologne. https://www.sexualharassmentlawyerblawg.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/187/2024/05/Screenshot-2024-05-03-at-1.19.58-PM-227x300.png

Our firm represents an African-American man in North Dakota, who recently filed Charges of Discrimination with a federal agency, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). In his first Charge he alleges racial harassment and retaliation against his former employer, Ironworks Welding, after two workers re-enacted “mock” lynchings; in his second Charge, he alleges he was fired one week after  his employer received his first EEOC Charge, in retaliation for standing up to racial harassment.

In April 2022, our Client began work at Ironworks Welding, Inc. as a “single hand” in the Piping Prefab shop, in Dickinson, North Dakota. He was at the time the only African-American worker.

Beginning when he was hired, our Client believed he was being treated with suspicion, so much so that he ultimately told his Safety Manager he felt targeted due to his race, and not trusted. Nevertheless, he liked his job and wanted to succeed and help the Company.

Veolia_Logo-300x157
Friedman & Houlding LLP represents a transgender female (“Charging Party”), who has filed an EEOC Charge of harassment and retaliation against her former employer Veolia Nuclear Solutions (“Veolia”), a federally contracted company that carries out nuclear energy facility clean-up and waste removal, at its Richland, Washington location. As alleged in her EEOC Charge, Charging Party was forced to quit after filing a complaint of a hostile work environment with Veolia’s Human Resources department. Federal contractors are under a special duty to proactively abide by anti-discrimination laws. The OFCCP is responsible for enforcement.

As a technician at Veolia, Charging Party reported to a Project Manager (“Project Manager”) at the Richland project facility. The Project Manager directed gender-based harassment at Charging Party on an almost daily basis, likening transgender individuals to “freaks” and pedophiles, and when Charging Party later informed Project Manager of her impending gender transition, he intensified the harassment, taunting her with comments about “chopping off her pecker,” and telling her that her gender transitioning was a “mistake” she would regret.

In addition, Project Manager would regularly make bigoted comments, including comments about trans people, on speaker phone, in conversations he had with colleagues and project managers in other facilities, as well as to the then-Director of Technologies—knowing that others, including Charging Party could overhear. Charging Party felt persecuted for just being who she was, knowing that management condoned such vile harassment.

LOGO-292x300The EEOC requires that the employer file an Opposition Statement. Annandale did so. It included statements that are false. Knowingly submitting a false statement would be plainly intended to mislead a federal agency’s investigation.

In opposition to the Charge that the Design Manager engaged in physical and verbal sexual harassment of the Charging Parties, Annandale relies on the sworn Declaration of a current employee (“Declarant”), who, under oath, states, “I have never felt uncomfortable working with [Design Manager]”—referring to the design manager at issue in the Charges filed with the EEOC.

She also states—under oath, referring to one former employee witness (“Former Employee”)—as follows: “I worked with [Former Employee]. [She] [n]ever told me that [the Design Manager] had touched [her] inappropriately or otherwise made [her] feel uncomfortable.”

EH-building-300x168
This is the third in a series of blog pieces written for and reviewed by the Charging Parties which explains their ordeal 

The CEO, the Head of Human Resources and the Therapy Team Leader Threaten to Fire Women who Complain about Sexual Harassment at Encompass, a Major Hospital Chain 

 
The CEO and the Director of Human Resources at Colorado Springs were required to report to Headquarters that they were receiving numerous complaints of sexual harassment perpetrated by the same provider who had been the subject of the sexual assault allegation. 

LOGO-292x300

Since a story aired in on WHSV3 in August regarding sexual harassment Charges filed with the EEOC by two former employees against Annandale Millwork and Allied Systems for ignoring complaints of sexual harassment by the “Design Manager” (referred to as the “Manager” in first blog post), four former employees of Annandale, have come forward with allegations based on what they witnessed working at Annandale. The allegations included an account of racial discrimination by Laurie Frogale, who ran Human Resources, and a situation where she observed one of her managers using racial slurs, with a person of color present, but said nothing to the harasser. The allegations, made under oath, include that a complaint was made to Frogale of sexual harassment by the Design Manager before the two women who filed Charges with the EEOC worked at Annandale and complaints about sexual harassment by other managers, which Laurie Frogale either ignored or condoned. The women who have come forward have provided sworn declarations alleging sexual harassment and disregard for their civil rights. Excerpts are repeated below.

The first Declarant stated under oath that she is African American and that when she was hired in September 2016 she had straight hair. In her sworn declaration she states that:

6.  However, around three months after I was hired, I decided to have my hair out in an afro. When Laurie noticed my hair that day, she approached me with a look of disgust and said, “What is this? This is not who I hired.”

LOGO-292x300EEOC Charges of Sexual Harassment Have Been Filed Against Annandale Millwork and Allied Systems Corp. Alleging Complaints were Ignored for Years

This is the first installment in a series of posts about two women who worked at Annandale Millwork and Allied Systems Corp., in Winchester, Virginia, who filed EEOC Charges alleging they were subjected to physical and verbal sexual harassment by their male Manager despite a previous complaint two years earlier by one of the women. On April 16, 2021, one woman complained to Human Resources employee Elizabeth Foster that the Manager was sexually harassing her, a second woman who filed a Charge with the EEOC, and other women.

Elizabeth texted the first woman that she had informed Laurie Frogale, Head of Human Resources. (In addition to being the Head of Annandale Human Resources, Laurie Frogale is one of the owners of Annandale.) Elizabeth texted the first woman that:

SCA Pharmaceuticals has filed a motion to compel arbitration in Plaintiff H. Dragon’s sexual harassment and retaliation case—and while the motion fails for several other reasons, this case is among the first to present an interesting legal question about the applicability of the Ending Forced Arbitration Act in sexual harassment cases. 

In its motion, SCA claims that Plaintiff Dragon signed an acknowledgement that he had received the company’s employee handbook, and that the handbook contained language requiring that employment disputes be arbitrated. Plaintiff opposed the motion, pointing out the obvious: the handbook and acknowledgement explicitly disclaimed creating contractual obligations “of any type”—meaning that by SCA’s own choice, no agreement to arbitrate could have been created. Plaintiff also pointed out that any agreement to arbitrate based on those documents would have been illusory, if it had actually existed, since the acknowledgement retains SCA’s authority to alter the policies in its handbook—including any purported arbitration agreement—unilaterally at any time. 

But even though these facts are enough to dispose of the motion, the motion also presented a separate and novel legal issue: does The Ending Forced Arbitration Act (“EFAA”) apply to a hostile work environment claim like this one, where the harassment started before the law came into effect, and continued after it was already effective?  

A federal judge in the Western District of Oklahoma has denied Northeastern State University’s motion to dismiss a former employee’s claims of sexual harassment and retaliation under both Title VII and Title IX, after a coworker allegedly put his hands down her pants. 

 Deanie Hensley, the plaintiff in the action, worked for NSU in Tahlequah, Oklahoma for approximately 13 years. She alleged in her First Amended Complaint that multiple supervisors and co-workers engaged in sexually inappropriate behavior over that time, including sharing sexual cartoons and remarking on women’s bodies, but Hensley’s complaints resulted in no changes. After her complaint about a particular supervisor resulted in retaliation including stripping Hensley of job duties, she decided to take a position with a contract company that provided the university’s mail services. The joint employment with NSU and this company allowed her to continue working at NSU and using her expertise and familiarity with the NSU campus and personnel. However, Hensley alleges that one of the coworkers who had a habit of making offensive remarks sought her out on the job, then: “reached across the counter and put his hands down her jeans, with the backs of his hands against her stomach. He reached down to her panty line. He then pulled her belt buckle and shook it, commenting on how she had been ‘losing weight.'”  

 Shaken and traumatized by the assault, Hensley alleges that she complained to NSU campus police. Following even more complaints that the harasser was following Ms. Hensley and approaching near her in violation of a protective order, Hensley alleges in her Complaint that Steven Turner, NSU’s President, threatened the contract company with the loss of its contract if it did not remove Ms. Hensley from the NSU campus. Ms. Hensley alleges the inevitable result of this threat would be that she would lose her job–and that in fact, she did lose her job as a consequence. 

Contact Information