Janitorial Company Can’t Sweep Sexual Harassment Under the Rug; Settles EEOC Suit

Female employees of a Dallas/Fort Worth janitorial service won’t have to labor anymore without a sexual harassment policy in place.

That’s one of the positives to emerge from the settlement of a sexual harassment lawsuit filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission against Complete Maintenance, Inc., a Dallas/Fort Worth commercial janitorial service doing business in the New Orleans Metropolitan area.

In the lawsuit, EEOC charged Complete Maintenance with liability for the severe sexual harassment perpetrated by one of the company’s male supervisors. According to EEOC, while cleaning the men’s bathroom at a retail store serviced by the company, a housekeeper was sexually assaulted by the supervisor, who also threatened to kill members of her family if she told anyone about the assault. The following day, the housekeeper reported the assault, at which time a store manager contacted the sheriff’s department.

After the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office received the report and informed the company, the accused supervisor left Louisiana to attend a Complete Maintenance meeting. However, he never returned to work for the company and his whereabouts have been unknown since the incident, the lawsuit said.

Complete Maintenance had no written sexual harassment policy and had never provided the harasser/supervisor, the housekeeper or any other employee training on sexual harassment.

In addition to a $45,600 cash settlement, the company agreed to develop an effective policy to protect employees against harassment and/or retaliation and train its employees about these policies and Title VII’s prohibitions concerning harassment and retaliation.

Here’s more on the lawsuit and settlement.

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