Massage Parlor Receptionist Files Sexual Harassment Lawsuit
A former receptionist of a Florida massage parlor with the unfortunate name of “Massage Envy” is being sued by a former employee who says that she was sexually harassed on numerous occasions by a 68-year-old massage therapist. According to the plaintiff, the massage therapist routinely propositioned her for sex, left sexual comments on her Instagram, attempted to hug and touch her inappropriately. She says that when she reported the conduct to her employer, the conduct got worse.
Massage Envy is a corporate massage chain with franchises in various locations across the U.S. The name is a clear play on “penis envy” which makes me wonder what sorts of massages the chain is performing. Recently, Florida has been cracking down on paid prostitution in the guise of massage services, and prostitution remains illegal in Florida as Patriots’ owner Robert Kraft learned. Nonetheless, you can find them advertised on the internet in the State of Florida, so the current state of the law and its enforcement is questionable.
Analyzing the lawsuit
The conduct of the employee at the massage parlor started the lawsuit, but the failure of the massage parlor to correct the conduct is what will drive it through to the finish line. The employee will have evidence on her Instagram page plus a long history of misconduct that will be corroborated by other employees. In a case like this, the employee need only report the conduct to a superior to trigger sexual harassment and civil rights protections. If the employer does not adequately handle the situation, then the employee would have a right to sue. In this case, it appears that the conduct got worse after she directly addressed the matter with her employers. She reported that she told the individual employee to stop “dozens” of times to no avail. So, her lawsuit against the massage parlor is a slam dunk in legal terms.
Duty to protect employees from unwanted sexual advances
Employers have a duty to protect their employees from unwanted sexual advancements. This means protecting employees from the conduct of supervisors, other employees, and even the public. In cases where an individual who is a member of the public routinely harasses an employee, the business would be entitled to prevent that customer from entering their premises to protect their employee. If the employee complains about the conduct, then the employer must step in to protect the employee. In this case, the employer failed in their duty to protect their employee from another employee. Hence, they are liable for sexual harassment.
Talk to a Jacksonville Sexual Harassment Attorney Today
If you’ve been sexually harassed in the workplace and your employer refuses to intercede on your behalf, call the Jacksonville sexual harassment attorneys at the Law Offices of Carol M. Galloway today to schedule a free consultation and learn more about how you can fight back.