The famous Plaza Hotel, located in New York City, has had a sexual harassment lawsuit filed against it by some of its female employees. The Plaza Hotel is an icon for its famous political figures and entertainers. While many are shocked by the allegations, sexual harassment in the hotel industry is fairly common. According to a recent report, 8 in 10 hotel workers have experienced being harassed on the job.
There are many federal laws, as well as many state statutes and city ordinances that govern sexual harassment in the workplace. Here, the lawsuit was filed under the New York City Human Rights Law. According to the law, any unwelcome sexual advances, comments or actions constitute sexual harassment. The advances may be by a co-worker, supervisor, or anyone else in a place of authority. When a person brings the sexual harassment to the attention of a superior or employer, he or she is responsible for addressing the problem and taking action. If not, an employer will be liable regardless of being directly involved in the sexual harassment.
The lawsuit commenced by the Plaza Hotel workers’ provides instances where co-workers touched them inappropriately and made vulgar comments. One victim alleges that a supervisor pushed her into a closet and unwillingly kissed her. In addition, other allegations include co-workers making graphic remarks and gestures at the women. According to the lawsuit, plaintiffs brought this to the attention of management. However, they failed to address the situation. Management did, however, put one Plaintiff on leave and told the others to dress conservatively in order to avoid advances from the male workers.
In addition to the news concerning the Plaza Hotel, the South Carolina owners of a Holiday Inn Express recently settled an Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) claim for $90,000.
If you have been a victim of sexual harassment, contact an experienced New York employment law attorney who can ensure that your rights are protected. Call Steven Mitchell Sack at (917) 371-8000 or email him at sms@StevenSack.com.