As part of the settlement, Morgan Stanley agreed to work on the following: management and employee training programs, anti-discrimination policies, complaint tracking, promotion and compensation analysis, exit interviews of female employees leaving the Company voluntarily and retention and promotion programs.
Amy Wiginton filed a class action sexual harassment complaint. Her attorney asked her previous employer to preserve emails which allegedly evidenced sexual harassment. The Company preserved only the emails pertaining to Ms. Wiginton. Other emails were destroyed. The Magistrate Judge found the destruction of electronic evidence to be in bad faith and possibly sanctionable.
A female clerk alleged four years of daily lewd and offensive remarks made about women in her presence. The court looked at: (1) the frequency; (2) severity; (3) whether the statements were threatening or humiliating or an offensive utterance; and (4) whether the statements unreasonably interfered with work performance. The Eighth Circuit dismissed the case.
A server at a hotel restaurant filed a complaint for sexual harassment, among other things, after she was fired. Her complaint was dismissed because the hotel had an effective sexual-harassment reporting policy and the plaintiff unreasonably failed to take advantage of the hotelís corrective policy.
A nurse’s supervisor was found to be “boorish, offensive and uncouth.” However, the employer was not responsible for his sexual harassment because it took immediate corrective action. The supervisor was barred from “solo encounters” with the nurse. This response was deemed effective.
The Seventh Circuit writes: “the parties appear to have simply collected the sum total of all the unpleasant events in Volovsek’s work history since 1992, dumped them in the legal mixing bowl of this lawsuit, set the Title VII-blender to puree and poured the resulting blob on the court.” One “barefoot and pregnant” comment stood out because it was made around the time Volovsek was denied a promotion. Her failure to promote claim is therefore good enough to be presented to a jury. Her harassment claim is dismissed because Volovsek failed to show harm.
Two alleged victims of sexual harassment failed to complain pursuant to company policy. Their case was not dismissed because supervisors allegedly witnessed the sexual harassment and failed to take corrective action.
The teacher was told that she must recant her position on abortion or be fired. After she was fired, she brought a sex discrimination and Pregnancy Discrimination Act claim. The Court dismissed the case because it did not want to become entangled in church doctrine in violation of the First Amendment to the Constitution.
A marketing coordinator was awarded $15 million in punitive damages after a trial in a sexual harassment case. Because Title VII caps punitive damages at $300,000, the award will be reduced to $300,000.
At a trade show, a customer service coordinator learned that her co-worker bet a customer that the customer could not have intimate sexual contact with her. The court found that this one incident was not sufficiently egregious to constitute a hostile work environment. The court considered the fact that her co-worker lacked significant supervisory authority and made the bet outside of her presence when making its decision.