Federal officials claim that a hotel manager in Washington abused two female housekeepers sexually. Hotel owners neglected to look into the manager who harassed Latina housekeepers.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) today announced that GIPHX10, LLC, and Jaffer, Inc., Edmonton, Canada-based firm, will pay $370,000 to those who sexually abused two female former housekeeping employees. The company has also agreed to provide other relief to settle a sexual harassment lawsuit.
The proprietors of the hotel allegedly allowed the male housekeeping manager to harass those housekeepers sexually. The EEOC claimed that the harassment included touching the women while they were cleaning hotel rooms by themselves, making fun of them for protesting the assaults, and making sexually suggestive remarks to them.
The manager also repeatedly threatened to rape one employee. One woman left her job due to her concern for her safety.
After one of the housekeepers and a bilingual co-worker complained about the harassment to the general manager, GIPHX10, LLC, and Jaffer, Inc. chose not to look into the claims in-depth. Instead, the owners turned a blind eye and accepted the manager’s denial. The general manager allegedly subsequently took revenge, according to the EEOC.
The claimed behavior breaks the Civil Rights Act of 1964’s Title VII. As a result, both employees entered into the EEOC lawsuit, added new state law allegations, and on June 3, 2021, the court added Jaffer, Inc. as a necessary party.
The two employees will receive $370,000 from GIPHX10, LLC and Jaffer, Inc. as part of the three-year consent order that ends the lawsuit. The company has also been asked to keep a consultant to create policies that help in preventing sexual harassment like this one.
According to the EEOC’s Select Task Force on the Study of Harassment in the Workplace, workplace harassment increases when there is an enormous power difference and employees have limited English language proficiency. EEOC San Francisco District Director Nancy Sienko also said employers must inform employees about harassment policies in a language they can comprehend.
EEOC Senior Trial Attorney Carmen makes it clear that the Commission’s top priority continues to be protecting vulnerable workers and preventing and resolving workplace harassment.