Fort Lauderdale Funeral Home pays 85k in a Sexual Harassment and Retaliation Suit

Sexual Harassment: Funeral Home Misconduct comes to Light

Fort Lauderdale – The owner and manager of McWhite’s Funeral Home, Albert McWhite, has been accused of sexually harassing multiple women in the workplace. The EEOC attempted to settle this matter before it went to court, then filed a sexual harassment lawsuit on behalf of the women who endured sexual harassment during their employment with the McWhite Funeral Home.

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The sexual harassment lawsuit states, McWhite engaged in a serious unlawful activity, sexual harassment, with his female employees. The women allegedly experienced working in an environment welcoming sexual acts, unwanted physical contact, and ongoing intolerable sexual harassment. According to the sexual harassment lawsuit, McWhite supported a work environment that overlooked the workplace misconduct.

It has come to the attention of the EEOC, that in addition to the verbal and physical sexual harassment, the female employees were shown sexual photos of “naked women engaged in sexual acts” on McWhite’s phone. The suit claims McWhite would place his “hand on his crotch” and indirectly request sexual attention by inquiring about a female employee’s bills and asking her if he could “take care of her bills” as an exchange. The sexual requests were unwanted by each female employee. Some individuals say they endured “violent touching” when their breasts and derrieres were groped too hard, or when their faces felt a hard blow.

Workplace Retaliation: The Female Employees’ Consequence

Employment in a sexual environment against one’s will is very uncomfortable and disturbing. The lawsuit says McWhite retaliated against female employees, current and former, who were against the workplace misbehavior. The sexual harassment lawsuit noted that the retaliation included “cutting employee hours,” which decreases the amount of daily sexual harassment experiences. It also reduces one’s pay that the women are accustomed to having. Another way the owner retaliated was through delivering unfavorable “references” to potential employers for the female employees who may have attempted to escape the hostile work environment.

The EEOC highlighted an experience that one particular female employee experienced. The female was on probation for an occurrence that happened outside of the workplace. The probation was free of all ties to the funeral home. Based on the sexual harassment lawsuit, it appears that the owner shared a personal relationship with a probation officer, that he allegedly used to put fear into the female employee on probation as a reaction to her request for EEOC assistance.

EEOC provides Workplace protection from Sexual Harassment

The EEOC filed the sexual harassment lawsuit in the U.S. District Court in the Fort Lauderdale Division of the Southern District of Florida. Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits employers from discriminating against employees on the basis of sex, gender, race, religion, color, and national origin. McWhite’s Funeral Home was accused of violating Title VII on the basis of sex through the sexual harassment, termination, and retaliation.

The EEOC resolved the sexual harassment lawsuit “under consent decree” in favor of the female employees. McWhite’s Funeral Home and the EEOC agreed that the female employees, who were sexually harassed and retaliated against would receive a portion of the 85k payout that McWhite’s Funeral Home must pay. In addition to the payout, McWhite’s Funeral Home will have an independent EEOC consultant who will collect and examine all workplace sexual harassment and discrimination complaints, that will be reported to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commissions.

A sexual harassment policy will be added to the workplace for the comfort of future employees and the current employees listed in this sexual harassment lawsuit. Anti-discrimination training with a focus on sexual harassment will be enforced to both employees and the owner. Employees will also have a notice visible at all times as a reminder of their rights and this sexual harassment lawsuit.

According to the EEOC Miami Regional Attorney, the sexual harassment at McWhite’s Funeral Home has been clear and consistent. As a result of this sexual harassment lawsuit, the goal is to “change the culture of this workplace,” so the women in the workplace are freed from sexual harassment and retaliation experiences.

If you have been a victim of sexual harassment at your job, and suffered retaliation as a consequence for speaking up in New York, New Jersey, or Philadelphia, contact our New York, New Jersey, and Philadelphia sexual harassment and retaliation lawyers at the Derek Smith Law Group, PLLC. Our sexual harassment lawyers are exceptionally skilled in employment law. They’re absolutely capable of analyzing your case, providing answers to all questions, and delivering excellent legal representation. For more information on sexual harassment and retaliation in the workplace, read our Employment Law Blog.


New York City, New Jersey and Philadelphia Employment Attorneys

If you feel you have been the victim of workplace sexual harassment in New York, New Jersey or Philadelphia or if your employment rights have been violated, then you should immediately contact the NYC, NJ, PA sexual harassment lawyers at the employment law firm of DEREK T. SMITH LAW GROUP, PLLC. No one deserves a hostile work environment.

Call today to schedule a FREE sexual harassment legal advice Consultation in NY, NJ & PA with one of our top rated sexual harassment attorneys here at the Derek T. Smith Law Group you can reach us online or by calling 877-4NYLAWS. Our NYC employment law attorneys handle a variety of cases involving sexual harassment, racial discrimination, and other employment-related claims. We serve clients throughout New York, including Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, and Staten Island. We also have offices in New Jersey, Philadelphia, and Washington D.C. to serve you.

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