Tampa Councilman Steps Down Amid Sexual Harassment Claims
A Tampa councilman will step down as chairman after sexual harassment allegations against him were deemed credible by investigators. The councilman will retain his seat on the council but will abdicate his position as chair.
A former aide made 19 allegations against the former chairman which did not include inappropriate sexual advances, but rather other allegations including making derogatory comments about the employee’s sex life, making derogatory comments about women in general, giving her a pet name, and making derogatory comments about the woman’s daughter.
The move to step down comes amid the likelihood that the council would vote to remove the councilman from that position. A review of the councilman’s past indicates that he faced numerous such accusations throughout his career. These include three domestic violence cases.
The incident came after the councilman attempted to have the employee transferred from his office to another where she already worked. The councilman said he didn’t want to terminate the employee because she had a daughter. However, you cannot terminate or transfer an employee merely because they react with offense to your offensive conduct. The transfer resulted in a $20,000/year reduction in her compensation.
According to the plaintiff, the councilman counseled his employee to tell her daughter to stand up straight because she had really big boobs and if she continued to stand hunched over, they would “be down here”. That might be funny at a comedy club in which the individual being referenced was not the daughter of your employee, but in this context, it was neither funny nor acceptable.
The councilman is also accused of making anti-LGBT comments about the mayor and insinuating that the woman was in the same “club”.
In another incident, the councilman asked that documents be delivered to his home but answered his door topless and wearing boxers.
In another incident, a conversation around the Obamas sprang up in which the councilman commented on the former President’s daughters in a lewd and sexual way.
Understanding the lawsuit
While sexual harassment lawsuits often involve inappropriate sexual advances made by one individual toward another, they don’t have to. Lawsuits can be filed under a theory of a hostile work environment. If an individual makes ongoing discriminating comments about your, your gender, your race, or any other protected characteristic, that qualifies as gender discrimination causing a hostile work environment. It is particularly upsetting when an individual in a position of power regularly makes comments about women in general, talks about minors in a sexual way, or discusses your daughter’s breasts. It is nearly certain that the man would not have broached the topic of a minor’s breasts had her father been standing there.
Talk to a Jacksonville Sexual Harassment Attorney Today
Have you been the victim of unwanted sexual advances, unwanted touching, or derogatory comments concerning your sexuality or gender? If so, 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 we can help.