Multiple Complaints of Harassment Were Ignored, Federal Agency Charges
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Magneti Marelli of Tennessee, LLC, an international exterior lighting manufacturer for the automotive industry d/b/a Magneti Marelli, violated federal law when it failed to address complaints of sexual harassment, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a lawsuit filed September 28th.
The EEOC's suit charges that Magneti Marelli subjected female assembly line workers to a sexually hostile work environment at its plant in Pulaski, Tennessee. A former employee and other women who worked in assembly were repeatedly subjected to unwelcome sexual advances, comments and touching by their line assembly supervisor. Specifically, the supervisor repeatedly propositioned his female subordinates to have sex with him, uninvitedly massaged their necks and backs, made inappropriate comments about their bodies, sang sexually explicit songs, and asked that they refer to him as "Big Daddy." The supervisor continued this conduct despite multiple requests for him to stop. Although Crouch and others complained about this abusive conduct, the company failed to take appropriate measures to protect the employees from harassment.
Such alleged conduct violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibits discrimination based on sex. The EEOC filed suit in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Tennessee, Columbia Division, Civil Action No. 1:18-cv-00074, after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement through its conciliation process. The suit seeks monetary relief in the form of compensatory and punitive damages, as well as an injunction against future discrimination.
"As the #MeToo movement continues to spur a national dialogue regarding workplace sexual harassment, the EEOC is firmly committed to ensuring that workers are free from a sexually hostile work environment," said Delner Franklin-Thomas, district director of the EEOC's Memphis District Office, which has jurisdiction over Arkansas, Tennessee, and portions of Mississippi. "The EEOC will continue to hold employers accountable for failing to protect employees from unlawful harassment."
The EEOC advances opportunity in the workplace by enforcing federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. More information is available at www.eeoc.gov. Stay connected with the latest EEOC news by subscribing to our email updates.