Affirmative Action/Quotas/Civil Rights/possible sexual harassment?

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Question
Hello:

I have a strange question for you and am just looking for your opinion. I am a 43 year old male who has idiopathic neuropathy.  It is a very painful condition where the nerves in your extremities start to die.  Long story short, my Neurologist started me on pain medication about two years ago.  Today when I went to pick up my prescription refill he requested that I give a urine sample (which they do sometimes) just to make sure you are taking the medication and that you are not using "illegal" narcotics. I was called in by a secretary and brought into a bathroom where she gave me a plastic cup to urinate into. She then proceeded to stand next to me to make sure I was urinating into the cup. I had a very hard time trying to "pee" while a woman I never met before made sure my penis was in the cup and the urine was coming from me and not some diversion. This has never happened to me before.  I can't imagine that if it was a female giving the urine a male secretary would be allowed into the bathroom alone with the woman to watch her urinate. This happened in Connecticut and am just wondering what your thoughts are on the issue.  Thank you for your time. P.S. no release forms were signed etc.

Answer
Hello,

First let me say that I cannot provide legal advice in this forum, for that, you would need to speak with an attorney licensed to practice in your State.

I can say generally that sexual harassment is only met when the behavior is of a sexual nature and so severe and pervasive as to prevent an employee from doing his/her job or preventing a customer from using a public accommodation.

In the case, you describe, it does not sound like the activity was sexual in nature or that you were targeted because of your sex.  However, it does seem like an inappropriate invasion of privacy.  Typically, when such observation is necessary, a person of the same sex would be used to observe.  I think it would be appropriate that you request a male witness in the future.

I hope this helps!
- Mike  

Affirmative Action/Quotas/Civil Rights

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Michael Troy

Expertise

I will answer questions relating to discrimination law or the 14th Amendment, sexual harassment, etc. I can`t give specific legal advice involving specific cases you might have.

Experience

I have worked as an attorney in this area, including several landmark cases involving racial preferences (such as Hopwood v. Texas, University of Michigan v. Gratz and UM v. Grutter).

Organizations
Former Attorney with the Center for Individual Rights.

Publications
Washington Times
Washington Post

Education/Credentials
JD from University of Michigan Law School

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