Sexual Favoritism Sexual Harassment

It is important to retain a Sexual Favoritism Sexual Harassment Attorney if you think you are in or was retaliated against for being in a sexual favoritism situation because these cases can be very difficult to prove. The Pursley Law Firm has a competent attorney ready to assist you and review the details of your Sexual Favoritism Sexual Harassment case. Their attorneys are able to help employees all over Texas; including the cities of Houston, Austin, Dallas, El Paso, Fort Worth, and San Antonio.

Sexual favoritism occurs when a supervisor gives preferential treatment to an employee based upon requests for sexual favors and/or submission to requests for sexual favors. The EEOC Guidelines provide that an employee who is a third-party bystander to a supervisor's favoritism of another employee may have a cause of action for sexual harassment. The Guidelines state that sexual favoritism may be unlawful where equally qualified employees are denied job benefits because they have not submitted (or been asked to submit) to the sexual requests of a supervisor. However, the courts can have very strict rulings on when Title VII is violated in a Sexual Favoritism case because the favoritism must be based on gender and no other parameters. For example, Title VII would be violated if managers, by their conduct, communicated the messages that members of the disfavored gender have no place other than as sexual playthings, and may advance only by their willingness to play along. In this instance, a court might deny summary judgment for the employer where plaintiff alleged that the sexual relationship between executive director and a co-worker of plaintiff created a "sexually biased environment" resulting in her discharge (basically a female employee who is not a direct recipient of harassment may have a cause of action for hostile work environment based on a pervasive atmosphere of offensive conduct in an office where managers maintained sexual relationships with staff members and bestowed preferential treatment on those who submitted). However, there are several examples that can demonstrate why the court often sides in favor of employers in Sexual Favoritism cases. One instance: the Fifth Circuit Federal Court of Appeals affirmed judgment in favor of the employer, establishing that the plaintiff could not state a claim for sexual harassment under Title VII, observing, "courts have held that when an employer discriminates in favor of a lover, such an action is not sex-based discrimination, as the favoritism, while unfair, disadvantages both sexes alike for reasons other than gender." The court found that the plaintiff (employee filing the claim) was transferred so that the favored employee could be placed in her position rather than because of her gender. Yet another case has a former secretary to a dean that sued a university for sexual harassment after she was terminated. She claimed she was discharged because she observed the dean embracing his female assistant in his office. The Fifth Circuit affirmed judgment in favor of the employer, ruling that even if the plaintiff's allegations were true, she could not state a claim for sexual harassment in violation of Title VII. The court reasoned that the termination decision was based upon the employee's inconvenient knowledge of the affair, not on her gender. And as another example, seven male respiratory therapists claimed they were unfairly disqualified for promotion so the department administrator could hire a woman with whom he was engaged in a romantic relationship. Similarly, a court concluded that because any woman applying for a job would have faced the same predicament, the plaintiffs were not excluded because of their gender and, therefore, Title VII was not violated. Another court rejected a sexual harassment claim based upon a relationship between a supervisor and a co-worker of the plaintiff. The court recognized that the situation could constitute harassment if the favoritism actually interfered with the plaintiff's work environment, but refused to hold such a situation is always sexually harassing. The court found enough evidence to support the plaintiff's claim of retaliation for her complaint about the work environment, but did not find sufficient evidence to support her contention that the workplace was oppressive and intolerable.

These are several examples of courts often siding with employers unless it is explicitly clear that an employee was discriminated against in the sexual favoritism solely because of their gender. There are many different types of sexual harassment situations in the workplace today and it can be confusing to understand when your rights have been violated. An experienced employment attorney can best assist you when you have experienced retaliation from sexual harassment complaints or refused to comply with sexual favoritism sexual harassment complaints.

Do I Have A Sexual Favoritism Case in Texas?

Sexual Harassment Information Center

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