Supervisor Sexually Assaulted an Employee, Terminated Another Who Resisted Sex Demands, Federal Agency Charges
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - Sys-Con, LLC, a Montgomery, Alabama-based construction general contractor that also provides facility and building maintenance services, violated federal law when at least two female employees working in the Hyundai plant in Montgomery were subjected to sexual harassment by their Sys-Con supervisor, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a lawsuit filed on September 26, 2018.
According to the EEOC's lawsuit, from approximately December 2015 to May 2017, Sys-Con employed a supervisor who repeatedly pressured two female employees for sex, played pornographic movies, exposed himself, and sexually assaulted one of them. The harasser also threatened to have the victims and their spouses terminated if they did not comply. The supervisor did terminate one of the employees because she resisted his advances.
The EEOC further contends that Sys-Con had no anti-harassment policy, no complaint procedure for employees to report harassment, and had never trained supervisors or employees on sexual harassment or how to report it.
Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination which is prohibited by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The EEOC filed suit (EEOC v. Sys-Con, LLC Case No. 2:18-cv-00837) in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama on September 26, 2018 after completing an investigation and first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process. The lawsuit seeks monetary damages for the victims, including compensatory and punitive damages, and injunctive relief.
"Title VII prohibits a supervisor from threatening or otherwise pressuring employees to have sex and terminating an employee who resists. Federal anti-discrimination laws exist to protect workers from such a sexually hostile work environment," said the EEOC Birmingham District Director Bradley Anderson. "The EEOC will act when employers allow such egregious conduct to take place."
Marsha Rucker, regional attorney for the EEOC's Birmingham District, said, "Employers have an obligation to provide a workplace free from sexual harassment and that includes providing a clear means for employees to report harassment. No employee should be required to submit to demands for sex or risk losing his/her job."
Sys-Con, LLC employs more than 150 employees, and provides facility and building maintenance services for the Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Plant in Montgomery, Alabama.
The EEOC's Birmingham District consists of Alabama, Mississippi (except 17 northern counties) and the Florida Panhandle.
The EEOC advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. More information is available at www.eeoc.gov. Stay connected with the latest EEOC news by subscribing to our email updates.