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Woman files workplace sexual harassment suit

Both sexual harassment and retaliation or reporting harassment are illegal. However, employers in Texas and other states sometimes commit these acts, which is grounds for litigation. One woman in another state recently filed a retaliation lawsuit against the state's department of health after being fired from there for allegedly complaining about workplace sexual harassment.

The woman, a former autopsy assistant, claimed she suffered the loss of income as a result of the firing. She also allegedly suffered emotional distress and mental anguish along with other damages exceeding $75,000. She is seeking an unspecified amount in punitive damages along with attorney fees.

The woman was hired back in October of 201l. She later filed a complaint with the human resource department in June of 2015, claiming two instances of undesired touching as well as harassment. Both of these instances involved the same male colleague placing a hand on the woman's back. One of the instances was substantiated by an internal investigation, and the man was terminated in July of 2015. However, the woman claimed she was later harassed and then reassigned from her duties in retaliation for her harassment complaint.

Undesired sexual advances as well as a request for a sexual favor are considered sexual harassment by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. If there is evidence that a business has engaged in workplace sexual harassment or related retaliation, the victim employee has the right to file a claim against the business. A remedy, such as the reinstatement of a job, may result from a claim that is successfully litigated in Texas.

Source: grandforksherald.com, "Fired employee who filed sexual harassment claim sues ND Health Department for retaliation", Mike Nowatzki, June 27, 2016

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