Sexual Harassment/Sexual Harassment
QUESTION: I am an Independent Petroleum Landman and was working as a subcontractor for a brokerage firm. I had been friends with the crew chief that initially hired me for a number of years before going to work for him. He is also a subcontractor. During the 8 months of doing subcontracting work, I have been asked to have sexual relations with the crew chief when he was in town. In October of 2012, it became very obvious that there was tension between myself and the crew chief. I have text messages that can be retrieved from my mobile provider showing the sexual comments that were made from the crew chief to myself on a regular basis. In early January, the crew chief sent me a text to let me know he was coming in town and ask "are you ready." I commented I guess I am as ready as possible for this ass chewing. His next comment was "for a really good fu**ing." I ignored the text and we met about 5:00 p.m. to discuss business. I met him in his hotel room to go over the prospect we were working. He pulled the curtains shut when I entered the room. I was uncomfortable. About 10 minutes after being in his hotel room, the phone rings and it is my husband and he had locked himself out of our hotel room so I told him to come get my key. The crew chief asked who is coming down and I told him my husband to get the key to the room. He threw open the curtains to the room and became very irritable. I tried to keep our meeting strictly about business. It just so happened that another subcontractor showed up at the hotel room and they decided it was time to go to the bar at the hotel. Here we are a few months later, and the crew chief terminated me. I spoke with another subcontractor that has worked under this same crew chief for much longer a period of time than myself and she indicated that she has read text messages from other female subcontractors where the crew chief had suggested having sex and when they didnt respond, the crew chief either decided he did not like them anymore and his behavior toward them was obvious or they no longer work for him. The subcontractor I was speaking with indicated that if the females reject him or just dont respond the crew chief appears to have an issue with those females. One of the subcontractors that quite back in August approximately, did file sexual harassment on this same crew chief.
ANSWER: Hi Christy, for some reason I am not getting notifications of a question until there is a "reminder" sent so I apologize for the technical glitch with this site I belong to. From what I have reviewed, I would immediately file a sexual harassment complaint with the regional EEOC directly. It is always best to use the internal process first; however as you have stated it appears that there is no resolution with others during so. His comments are egregious in nature and clearly rise the level of a hostile working environment and wrongful termination. I would make sure that you have all evidence stated, witnesses who can come forward. Remember that you must file within 180 days of the last incident. You may be able to bring in past prior incidents if they are related but you cannot wait more than 180 days with the EEOC. Depending on your state, you may have a human rights commission that allows for more time and if you could give me your state, I will give you the contact and information for that.
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QUESTION: The State is Texas
The website above gives you all you need to initiate a discrimination complaint. I recommend using the Texas commission because they jointly file with the EEOC. That way you have local involvement and EEOC oversight.
I would call or email them first to start the process; calling would be better to get this on record as soon as possible. They will establish a file, go over what is needed, the length of time it will take to investigate, etc., Once you go this route be prepared to stick with it because from what you have written, you have a very strong case. You will be asked what you want to make you whole so begin to think about salary loss, promotions you may have received if otherwise not harassed, getting your job back, protecting others, etc.
Good luck in this process and if you have any questions along the way, please do not hesitate to ask.