Everyone who gets up every day and heads off to work deserves to work in an atmosphere free of sexual harassment. An employee should not have to suffer a hostile work environment for fear of losing their ability to provide financially for themselves and their families. Unfortunately some employers either knowingly allow or even actively foster an environment where employees are subject to repeated instances of sexual harassment.
Two employees of a Twin Cities car dealership said that they were no longer willing to work in such a hostile environment and have filed a lawsuit claiming that they experienced discrimination and sexual harassment. The suit claims that the CEO and a variety of other managers and other superiors engaged in the improper behavior.
The allegations in this case are appalling and paint a picture of a horrible work environment that no person should have to endure. The female employees claim that general manager and another manager pulled down their pants and underwear in front of another employee. The parts service director is accused of grabbing one of the women’s buttocks. The CEO allegedly kissed and hugged one of the female employees repeatedly. One female employee was told that she made about a third less than her male counterparts.
This alleged activity clearly goes beyond a single misunderstanding or a questionable joke. When the woman initially reported the behavior to the company’s human resources manager they were apparently told “we don’t want to hear about it.” One of the female employees reported being told by the General Manager that it was a good thing that she and the CEO were friends or that the company would lose a lawsuit.
Source: Pioneer Press, “Former Midway Ford employees claim sexual harassment, discrimination,” Emily Gurnon, April 13, 2012.