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May 2019 Archives

Senior Florida banking regulator accused of sexual harassment

The Florida Department of Financial Services placed the state's most senior banking regulator on administrative leave on May 10 while a sexual harassment claim filed by an employee of the DFS's Office of Financial Regulation is investigated. In the press statement announcing the move, the chief financial officer of Florida said that the Office of the Inspector General had been called in to conduct the investigation.

Determining retaliation after FMLA leave

If a Florida worker files a claim against an employer regarding retaliation for taking leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act, the court may look at remarks made by supervisors as well as the the timing of the leave and alleged retaliation. This was the case in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York on May 6 regarding a claim of FMLA-related retaliation. The court found that these factors made it an issue that could go to trial and denied the employer a summary judgment.

Dozens of McDonald's employees file sexual harassment complaints

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and courts nationwide are processing complaints and lawsuits from dozens of people who claim that they suffered sexual harassment while working at McDonald's. A Florida woman has joined the group of victims. On top of being the target of unwanted touching from a co-worker, who also aimed sexually explicit comments at her, the woman said that the co-worker asked to pay for sex with her 1-year-old daughter.

Sexual harassment occurs at a high rate in the legal profession

Florida women who work in the legal profession probably already know that sexual harassment is common in their field. In a recent survey conducted by the International Bar Association and Acritas, 36.6% of women and 7.4% of men claimed they had experienced sexual harassment while working in the profession. Furthermore, one in two women said that they experienced bullying in the profession while one in three men said they experienced bullying.

What to know about disabilities at work

Roughly 30% of all employees who have a college education have a disability according to the Center for Talent Innovation. However, only 3.2% of workers actually identify themselves as disabled according to a study from the National Organization on Disability. Many Florida workers who are disabled have what is referred to as an invisible disability. This means that an individual looks healthy but could actually be experiencing a migraine or some other ailment.

Will Florida raise the minimum wage to $15?

As a minimum wage worker, you are experiencing a slightly higher paycheck this year. With a 21-cent increase, the minimum wage is now $8.46. This is a 2.5% increase thanks to the fact that the state constitution connects the minimum wage to inflation. But while this is probably a welcome bump to your earnings, it is probably not enough. 

Harassment claims increase in the #MeToo era

In 2018, the number of workplace discrimination complaints was down 9.3% compared to 2017. However, the number of sexual harassment complaints increased by 13.6% in that same time period. The increase in complaints is partially fueled by a willingness for employees in Florida and elsewhere to speak up in the wake of the #MeToo movement. While many of the complaints have been made by female employees, this is not always the case.

Record keeping important to build sexual harassment case

A process exists for workers in Florida to address sexual harassment. Victims do not have to accept that nothing can be done about the inappropriate behavior of co-workers or supervisors. To lay the groundwork for a complaint, a person should document the harassing behavior. A simple list with dates and descriptions of what happened could improve a person's ability to provide details when discussing the problem.

Jury awards $11.1 million in sexual harassment lawsuit

Florida employees who have faced sexual harassment in the workplace may be able to file a lawsuit against their employers if their harassment claims are not adequately addressed. This was the case with a former employee of the company Hologram USA, which produces holograms of deceased celebrities.

Retaliation over workers' comp claim is illegal

Unless you fall under a specific exception, you have the right to pursue a workers' compensation claim after you get hurt at work. Unfortunately, some employers are hostile to injured workers. Your employer may take your injury or filing of a claim as a threat. If this is the case, your employer may take negative employment action against you

Harassment complaints increase

During the previous fiscal year, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission received 7,609 complaints of sexual harassment in the workplace. This was a 13.6 percent increase over the previous year. However, workers in Florida and elsewhere filed 9.3 percent fewer complaints overall during the last fiscal year. The increase in sexual harassment claims is seen as a good thing by some because it means that individuals are feeling more confident about making their voices heard.

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