U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Custodial Company Fired Woman for Reporting Sexual Harassment, Agency Charges
ATLANTA – Home Companions Plus, Inc., doing business as Angels at Home, a custodial and personal care service operating throughout central Georgia, violated federal law by subjecting a female employee to sexual harassment and then firing her for reporting it, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a lawsuit recently filed.
According to the EEOC’s suit, Civil Action No., 5:11-cv-390(MTT), filed in U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Georgia, Macon Division, Angela Melton, the office manager, was subjected to repeated acts of sexual harassment by the company’s co-owner and chief executive officer. Over the course of a year, the CEO subjected Melton to repeated crude, unwelcome comments of a sexual nature. He also subjected Melton to physical harassment, the EEOC said. Melton’s internal complaints were ignored by the employer. She was fired in July 2011, within weeks after filing a discrimination charge with the EEOC.
Sexual harassment and retaliation for reporting it violate Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The EEOC filed its suit after first attempting to reach a voluntary settlement with the employer. The federal agency seeks back pay, compensatory and punitive damages for Melton, as well as injunctive relief designed to prevent such harassment and retaliation by the restaurant in the future.
“No employee should have to endure the kind of conduct that took place here, especially from the chief executive officer,” said Bernice Williams Kimbrough, district director for the EEOC’s Atlanta District Office. “Employers have an obligation to address and prevent sexual harassment, regardless of what position the harasser holds in the company.”
The EEOC enforces federal laws prohibiting employment discrimination. Further information about the EEOC is available on the agency’s web site at www.eeoc.gov.