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Sexual Harassment at work results in €45,000 payout

It is by no means a surprise to think that sexual harassment at work is common. With the rise of the high profile ‘Me Too’ and ‘Times Up’ movements, sexual harassment at work and female issue’s are at the top of people’s minds. At least that’s what we like to think.

Sexual Harassment at Work

It was in late 2016 that a distressed twenty-something-year-old lady met with Employment-Matters to tell us her story. She had been subject to 6+ months of sexual harassment at work from her then boss and also regular sexually suggestive comments. When our client reported the misconduct to an internal superior, a full investigation was completed but her boss claimed he could not remember making any comments. Prior to the investigation, the man had approached her numerous times and asked her to sit in his car with him, winked at her and directed crude jokes towards her about a tattoo she had.

Our client made a total of five complaints. Of these, two were upheld, one was overturned and a further two could not be substantiated. Some of the complaints made against her boss were of a very serious nature which had clearly left the woman feeling violated. Workplace Relations Commission Adjudicator Mr. Murphy, found our client to be a credible complainant and truly believed that what she had experienced had impacted both her personal and working life.

Due to the employer’s lack of commitment to resolving these complaints internally, they too were responsible said Mr. Murphy. The lack of commitment from the company had been discussed numerous times throughout the case and has helped to identify serious flaws in the business’ internal procedures.

The Award

In the end, our client was awarded an award of €35,000 from her boss for the distress suffered by the complainant. It was instructed that her employer pay our client a further €10,000 for the victimisation and distress of these issues. This gave our client a total award of €45,000.

Have you experienced sexual harassment at work or something similar with a boss or work colleague? If the answer is yes, we want to hear from you! We hear too many cases of women leaving these cases go on too long, or leaving their jobs and missing their 6-month opportunity timeline. Don’t be a victim of time too. Call Employment-Matters on 051 841 641 today for a free consultation with one of our employment law experts.