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Company sued after firing lesbian worker who reported harassment

Florida employers must ensure that their companies have well-publicized workplace policies and appropriate complaint structures along with proper monitoring and enforcement mechanisms. Employers need to make sure that no workplace discrimination or harassment takes place, and if such incidents are reported, appropriate action must be taken. Sadly, victims of workplace harassment are often terminated when they file complaints.

An auto detailing business in another state is facing a lawsuit claiming sexual and gender harassment. The lawsuit was filed by the state after the victim was allegedly terminated for filing a report with the state Division on Civil Rights. This case reportedly involves a lesbian employee who worked in a male dominated environment from July 2012 through mid-June 2013.

According to the complaint, her supervisors allegedly subjected her to regular crude comments related to her sexual orientation. Furthermore, colleagues repetitively proposed having sex with her -- even in written notes. The woman contended that she was also discriminated against in the types of jobs and the work hours allocated to her. The complaint also states that she was fired one month following her report to the Division.

Members of the LGBT community have the same rights to non-confrontational workplaces as all other Florida residents. Victims of sexual or gender discrimination -- or any other type of harassment in the workplace -- need not endure the humiliation as there are steps that can be taken to protect their rights under federal and Florida employment law. An experienced employment law attorney can assess the circumstances, provide sound counsel and powerful representation in the courtroom when necessary.

Source: nj.com, "Woman sexually harassed by co-workers, then fired for reporting it, authorities say", Ron Zeitlinger, March 11, 2016

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