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Press Release 08-25-2022

EEOC Sues Justin Vineyards & Winery and The Wonderful Company for Sexual Harassment and Retaliation

Winemaker and Parent Company Allowed Sex-Based Harassment at Southern California Locations, Federal Agency Charges

LOS ANGELES – Justin Vineyards & Winery LLC, a wine production company headquartered in Paso Robles, California, and its parent company, The Wonderful Company LLC, headquartered in Los Angeles, violated federal law by allowing a class of female employees to be subjected to sexual harassment, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a lawsuit filed today.

According to the EEOC’s lawsuit, beginning at least as early as 2017, male managers at Justin Vineyards & Winery LLC’s production and restaurant locations in Paso Robles, CA were allowed to sexually harass female employees on a daily basis through unwanted and repeated sexual advances, sexual comments and sexually offensive conduct, including unwelcome physical contact. Despite receiving complaints, Justin Vineyards & Winery LLC and The Wonderful Company LLC failed to properly investigate the complaints or take adequate steps to prevent the ongoing sexual harassment. Instead, some female employees who complained faced retaliation or were forced to leave the workplace.

Such alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits a hostile environment based on sex, including sexual harassment, as well as retaliation against individuals who complain about sexual harassment or engage in other protected activity. The EEOC filed suit (EEOC v. Justin Vineyards & Winery LLC, et al., Case No. 2:22-cv-06039) in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its voluntary conciliation process. The EEOC seeks monetary damages for the claimants, including compensatory and punitive damages, and injunctive relief against the company to prevent such unlawful conduct in the future.

“Employers who fail to take action to address sexual harassment and misconduct in the workplace create an environment that encourages this behavior. As a result, employees may be hesitant to voice their complaints; however, they have protections under federal law,” said Christine Park-Gonzalez, acting district director for the EEOC Los Angeles District.

Anna Park, regional attorney for the EEOC’s Los Angeles District, whose jurisdiction includes Paso Robles, added, “Complaints of sexual harassment and retaliation continue to persist across industries. Employees deserve a workplace that is free of such conduct.  The EEOC will continue to protect workers and ensure companies address complaints properly and prioritize accountability.”

One of the six national priorities of the Commission’s Strategic Enforcement Plan (SEP) is preventing workplace harassment through systemic litigation and investigation.

For more information on harassment, please visit For more information on sexual harassment in particular, please visit For more information on retaliation, please visit  Younger workers can find information about their rights and responsibilities in the workplace by visiting

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