Discharge for Sexual Harassment
Although legislation addressed sexual harassment nearly fifty years ago; it is remarkable the number of employee and employers who choose to negate the Civil Rights Act. “Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 guarantees that employers will provide a workplace free of sexual harassment. Harassment is divided into two categories: hostile work environment and quid pro quo” (Yasgoor & Bressler, p. 128). In the case study analyzed sexual harassment will fall within the category of hostile work environment. In brief, Peter Lewiston, a widow and slightly older gentleman was terminated for violating Pine Circle Unified School District sexual harassment policy. Beverly Gilbury, a married woman in her late twenties and teacher for the school was the accuser. Before the harassment began, Lewiston and Gilbury had a relationship indicative of co-workers. However, at the end of the 2007-2008 school year, Gilbury felt Lewiston’s behavior began to change and she felt as if he viewed her as more than a co-worker. Gilbury was uncomfortable with the affection Lewiston displayed and Gilbury obtained an injunction from the Court and filed a complaint of sexual harassment with the district’s EEOC officer.
According to the EEOC website sexual harassment states, “It is unlawful to harass a person (an applicant or employee) because of that person’s sex. Harassment can include “sexual harassment” or unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical harassment of a sexual nature” ("Sexual Harassment," n.d.). Although, Peter Lewiston’s intentions were not as clear as the explanation of harassment from the EEOC, it is clear his actions made Beverley Gilbury uncomfortable. After the first incident, Lewiston was reminded by Gilbury, “Remember, Peter, we’re just friends.” Obviously, Gilbury believed Lewiston’s actions were beginning to cross the line of normal co-worker relationship. Sexual harassment...
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