U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Federal Agency Charges Wynantskill Store Manager Grabbed and Verbally Harassed Teenage Employees
RENSSELAER, N.Y. —Severalfemale employees, some of whom were teenagers, were subjected to severe and pervasive sexual harassment at a Wynantskill, N.Y., Dunkin’ Donuts, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in an employment discrimination lawsuit announced today.
The EEOC’s lawsuit filed Wednesday, November 25, 2009, charges that the manager of the Dunkin’ Donuts on Main Street in Wynantskill grabbed female employees’ buttocks and breasts, kissed them on the neck, and hugged them against their will. He told them they were “hot” and told them he preferred virgins. He asked about their sex lives and described in explicit detail the sexual acts he wanted to perform on them, the EEOC said. He warned them not to tell anyone about what he said to them. The EEOC alleges company officials failed to take adequate measures to prevent and/or stop the harassment despite complaints.
Sexual harassment violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The EEOC filed the suit against College View Donuts LLC, doing business as Dunkin’ Donuts, Civil Action No. 1:09-cv-01320-TJM-RFT, in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York, after first attempting to reach a pre-litigation settlement.
The suit seeks monetary relief, effective policies and procedures against discrimination, effective training on anti-discrimination laws, and a permanent injunction against discrimination.
“The EEOC brought this action to obtain all appropriate remedies for these victims,” said Spencer H. Lewis, Jr., director of the EEOC’s New York District Office. “Companies need to understand that they must be vigilant about protecting its employees from harassment.”
EEOC Senior Trial Attorney Adela Santos added, “The EEOC takes allegations of sexual harassment very seriously, especially when the employees being harassed are teens. For many of these employees, this is their first job and they don’t know how to complain, especially when the harasser is their manager.”
The EEOC is responsible for enforcing federal laws against employment discrimination. Further information is available at www.eeoc.gov.