Pitre Car Dealership to Pay over $2 Million to Resolve EEOC Same-Sex Sexual Harassment Suit

Sexual harassment is not just a female problem. Recently, the Pitre car dealership in Albuquerque, NM was ordered to pay over $2 million for male-on-male sexual harassment and retaliation charges in a lawsuit filed by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC).

In this particularly egregious case of same-sex harassment, the EEOC charged a former lot manager, James Gallegos, under the direction of Charles Ratliff, Jr., then general manager, with subjecting a class of men to severe forms of sexual harassment. Gallegos made depraved sexual comments, solicited the workers for oral sex and physically harassed male employees. He would allegedly grab and bite their buttocks and genitals. According to the lawsuit, if anyone spoke up against the harassment, they were threatened or face negative employment actions.

The workers at the Pitre dealership were subjected to two serious, illegal workplace conditions known as:

  • Hostile work environment – if sex harassment leads to an offensive, intimidating working environment which interferes with your professional and emotional well-being, it may be considered a hostile work environment. The harassment the Pitre workers faced created a hostile work environment.
  • Retaliation – you cannot be fired, demoted, threatened or face negative employment actions for filing a sexual harassment claim, testifying in a case or being a part of an investigation. At the Pitre dealership, the harassed employees endured retaliation for fighting back against the harassment.

Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act prohibits the above behaviors in the workplace. This case represents the largest litigation settlement in the history of the EEOC’s Albuquerque Area Office. Over 50 men are expected to receive relief through the decree. Additionally, the Pitre car dealership has been ordered to put new anti-harassment policies in place to prevent future harassment.

If you have endured sexual harassment, a hostile work environment and/or retaliation at work, you have the power of the law on your side. With a skilled NYC lawyer on your side, you can pursue legal justice for the offensive acts.

The Derek Smith Law Group, PLLC handles a multitude of cases that involve sexual harassment in Manhattan and the greater New York City area Our sexual harassment attorneys also represent employees in New Jersey and Philadelphia. For further information, please feel free to call us at 212-587-0760 or toll-free at 1-877-4NYLAWS or email at dtslaws@msn.com.

 

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