Los Angeles, CA sexual harassment & employment attorney Natalie Weatherford talks about a case she worked on involving a man who was a pedophile and was known for sexually harassing and abusing other employees at work.
More In This Category
I handle a lot of sexual harassment in the workplace cases, and these cases are particularly devastating because, you know, it’s hard enough for someone to endure sexual harassment or sexual assault, but then to have it at your workplace, the place that you need to go every day to make money. That’s very damaging on a person. We handle a lot of cases that involve not only sexual harassment with words, pictures, a hostile work environment, but also sexual assault in the workplace where someone’s actually been, you know, touched, or assaulted at their place of employment by the person who employs them. One case that was very memorable to me was a case against the city of Long Beach Parks and Recreation Department. They employed a man who was obviously, you know, a pedophile, and he would hire these – he would hire younger boys, 17, 18, 19 years old, and he would engage in what’s called quid pro quo harassment.
The perpetrator, the pedophile, he would offer them extra money on their timecard in exchange for him being able to see their genitals, or watch them perform some sort of sexual act, all in the workplace, all during work hours. The biggest challenge in that case was putting responsibility onto the employer as a whole, rather than just that one pedophile that they employed, and the way that we did that was showing that the employer had received all of these complaints about the perpetrator. The city had all this knowledge that the perpetrator had been engaging in this type of behavior before, was just kind of a bad guy in general, and they didn’t do anything about it. They, in essence, allowed this to happen, so that was the tough part, was finding all of those little pieces to make sure that we can hold, you know, the employer as a whole responsible, rather than them just being able to say, “Oh, it was this one rogue employee who did something bad.”