Florida employees should not be subjected to any type of discrimination, harassment or mistreatment in the workplace. They should not fear inappropriate behavior from employers or co-workers, and they should not be afraid of retaliation if they report these things. Unfortunately, sexual harassment is a real problem for many employees, including those in the restaurant industry. One Orlando-area restaurant owner is accused of creating a hostile work environment for employees.
Accusations against the owner began to surface after a social media user posted frustration with the restaurant owner’s lack of support for the Black Lives Matter movement. In response, the original poster received many messages from former employees of all three of the owner’s establishments. Although the post was about racial justice, many of the messages included claims of a hostile work environment and sexual harassment experienced by many who worked for the restaurateur.
A few of the people who made claims said they feared retaliation if they revealed their identity or moved forward with legal action. People who worked for the owner witnessed him massaging workers without consent, asking about employees’ sexuality and making inappropriate comments about weight. Any attempts by employees to speak out about what they were experiencing were dismissed by the owner’s wife, a co-owner in the business.
Sexual harassment comes in many forms. Anyone who experiences behavior that makes them uncomfortable in the workplace may be a victim, and they have the right to speak out. It may be appropriate to seek damages from a civil claim, a process that is easier with the assistance of an experienced Florida attorney.