Articles Tagged with sexual harassment lawyer L.A.

The future of California sexual harassment lawsuits hangs in the balance, as the public is closely monitoring word of Governor Jerry Brown’s decision whether to sign the controversial AB 3080. The bill would result in direct impact to workplace harassment and gender discrimination claims by impeding an employer’s ability to limit disclosure and discussion of such agreements with mandatory arbitration agreements signed as a condition of employment.

As our L.A. sexual harassment attorneys recognize, the bill if passed would amend a portion of California Labor Code (specifically adding a Section 432.4) outlawing forced arbitration agreements barring job-seekers (employees or independent contractors) from speaking out publicly or pursuing civil court remedy agL.A. sexual harassment attorneyainst employers who fail to protect them from sexual harassment or gender discrimination. (The bill doesn’t specifically use the term “arbitration agreements,” but those policies are what is targeted and would be affected.)

Some have argued that what’s in the bill is already largely covered within provisions already existing in the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), which is the state’s anti-retaliation law shielding employees from retaliation if they have a reasonable belief of victimization from unlawful employment practices. Others say the bill, if passed, will be widely open to judicial challenge. In 1987, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Perry v. Thomas (and again in 2011 with AT&T Mobility LLC v. Concepcion) that the Federal Arbitration Act requires arbitration contracts generally be on equal footing with other types of contracts and that state law can’t interfere with federal policy.  Continue reading

California Senate and Assembly members will soon have a new set of rules in place by which they willsexual harassment investigate sexual harassment complaints, according to Capital Public Radio. The policy was unanimously approved by the Joint Legislative Rules Committee and was based on guidelines created by Los Angeles County. It effectively replaces the two separate policies each house was operating under previously. New standards include creation of an investigative unit, whose members would collect evidence and interview witnesses in connection to all complaints, and an external panel, whose experts would make decisions based on the evidence and recommend potential consequences. The rules have seen some revisions in recent weeks, including adding the ability to report inappropriate behavior by third parties and lobbyists who regularly interact with government workers. This would be in addition to legislative employees and lawmakers already protected by and accountable to the policy. Furthermore, a majority of the outside panel experts will be appointed by chief justice of the California Supreme Court. The panel will act separately from legislative counsel, allowing for neutral recommendations.

Before we can truly trust lawmakers to hold others accountable, they must show themselves to be trustworthy enough to hold themselves accountable. This is as true as ever in the wake of the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements. The past year has been eye opening in regards to the amount of sexual harassment that is taking place in work places across the country, including government offices. Roughly 150 women working for the state signed an open letter in October 2017 describing a culture of harassment and abuse in California politics. Three lawmakers in the state have stepped down due to accusations since then. Even more shocking are how many reports are being swept under the rug. That’s why we are seeing new policies cropping up all over the place.  Continue reading

The story of Harvey Weinstein and the mass accusations against him of sexual misconduct has been in the news for almost six months, and in that time it has set the sexual harassmenttone for the #metoo movement and a wave of new sexual harassment policies bursting forth around the country. And now there’s potential for more people to be able to speak up again the former Hollywood producer. Weinstein Co. recently filed bankruptcy, with plans for a sale in the wings, while the board also released any non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) put into place between employees and Harvey Weinstein.

A former assistant of Weinstein has been sharing more about the NDAs as part of efforts to help curb workplace misconduct in the future, according to a report from Deadline. She told a UK parliamentary committee that employees were pressured into signing NDAs. She alleges vague threats made to her and others if they chose to speak out against alleged sexual violation committed by Weinstein. Part of why she agreed to sign the NDA, she said, was the inclusion of clauses that would keep Weinstein accountable for his actions in the future. However, she said that portion of the agreement was largely ignored. The assistant first broke her NDA last fall shortly after stories about Weinstein sparked conversations about whether non-disclosure agreements should be enforced against workers who suffered sexual harassment or exploitation. Continue reading

Sexual harassment comes in many forms and happens to people across socio-economic spectrums. However, it has been the recent sexual harassmentrash of reports among celebrities and public figures that has really brought sexual harassment awareness into the mainstream. The modeling industry, in particular, has had a reputation for turning a blind eye on sexual harassment in the past that could be changing for the better as a result of this movement.

Condé Nast, publisher of such famous magazines as Glamour, Vogue, Vanity Fair, GQ, and Allure, has been working on a new code of conduct since October 2017 with plans to implement early this year, according to a New York Times report.

The code of conduct aims to make photo shoots safer for models and staffers, attempting to curb sexual harassment before it begins. Continue reading

A public transportation worker in Washington D.C. is suing the agency for damages in excess of $200,000 after she claims her supervisor repeatedly asked her for, demanded or forced hugs. Eventually, she said, when she reported the sexual harassment, her boss retaliated against her. hug1

The federal employment lawsuit alleges her supervisors ignored repeated reports of this treatment, even as another assistant superintendent in the bus division where plaintiff worked revealed he had a history of sexual harassment at the firm.

This case presents a good opportunity to talk about the H-word: Hugs. For some, hugs are viewed as a way to “spread the love.” But our sexual harassment lawyers know they can also be a liability to workplaces that allow them to go unchecked.  Continue reading