Monday, March 16, 2015

Sacramento State University Settles Sexual Harassment Lawsuit

The Sacramento Bee reported today that a lawsuit by a former employee working in the administration office has been settled.  The lawsuit alleged that the son of the university president engaged in sexual harassment of one of his employees.  The settlement amount was disclosed at $123,000.

Specifically, the plaintiff in this case, Jeffrey Sharp, alleged that university staff member, Alexander Gonzalez, Jr. made "offensive comments and suggestive actions" and that Mr. Sharp was retaliated against upon reporting such conduct.  The University spokesperson claimed that the college made a thorough and proper investigation into the allegations and found them to "not be substantiated."

Under California law, it is illegal to create a "hostile working environment" by engaging in sexual comments or conduct that is either "severe or pervasive."  It is further contrary to California law to retaliate against anyone making a legitimate claim that they have been subjected to sexual harassment in the workplace.

For a full resource on the sexual harassment laws of the State of California, I suggest the following link:

California Department of Fair Employment and Housing - Sexual Harassment Guidelines