Written by: John Dalton
| Read Time: 4 minutes

If you have suffered mistreatment at work because of sex or gender, call the Law Offices of John Dalton immediately. John Dalton has had unparalleled experience and success in protecting workplace sexual harassment victims from corrupt employers and harassers. John can handle the toughest and most sensitive harassment cases. 

Among his many successes, John’s ability to resolve challenging workplace disputes was again confirmed by his recent victory in the same-sex sexual harassment arbitration of Barnes v. AHMC San Gabriel Valley Medical Center (the Barnes case).

A Background on Barnes v. AHMC San Gabriel Valley Medical Center

Unlawful sexual harassment can occur between individuals of the opposite sex or the same sex. The Barnes case was about a woman accused of committing sexual harassment against another woman. 

The Harassment that Occurred

The Barnes case began with a female employee who worked as an operator in her employer’s telephone systems department. Another female operator (co-worker) began working with the employee, and the co-worker quickly started engaging in offensive, sex-based behavior that targeted the employee. 

Initially, the co-worker’s harassing behavior included comments about the employee’s breasts. The harassment then escalated to questions about the employee’s sex life and requests for the employee to show the co-worker her breasts and let the co-worker take pictures. The co-worker also engaged in sexually explicit conversations around the employee, took pictures of her without permission, stared at the employee while licking her lips, invaded the employee’s personal space, and showed the employee a nude photograph of a woman the co-worker claimed was a lover. 

The employee objected to her co-worker’s behavior repeatedly but to no avail. The co-worker often ignored or laughed in the face of the employee’s protests and threats to report the co-worker’s behavior. Sadly enough, the employee’s employer failed to take proper and legally required actions to address the co-worker’s harassment. 

The Effects of the Harassment

Sexual harassment can devastate anyone’s physical, mental, and professional well-being, and, unfortunately, the employee’s experience in the Barnes case was no different. The co-worker’s harassment and the employer’s failure to act caused the employee to experience the following: 

  • Anxiety,
  • Fatigue, 
  • Fright, 
  • Upset stomach, 
  • Loss of confidence,
  • Headaches, 
  • Sleeplessness,
  • Sadness, 
  • Anger, 
  • Embarrassment, 
  • Shock, and 
  • Loss of trust. 

To be able to deal with the distressing effects of her co-worker’s behavior, the employee had to take leave from work. 

The Employer’s Response to the Harassment

Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act, an employer is liable for workplace sexual harassment if it does not take reasonable steps to prevent or correct the harassment. 

The employer in the Barnes case did not comply with its legal responsibilities to properly address the co-worker’s harassment. The employer stated that the employee’s claims were unsubstantiated, even though an investigation corroborated the employee’s story and the claims of another alleged victim of the co-worker’s misconduct. Also, the employer neglected to timely inform the employee that the co-worker was fired for reasons unrelated to the employee’s harassment claims. 

The employer’s unreasonable acts caused the employee to miss nearly five months of work. As she should have, the employee initiated legal action against her employer to recover the damages she deserved. 

The Employee in the Barnes Case Reached Out to Our Office

Hiring an experienced employment attorney is vital to the success of a workplace sexual harassment claim. A skilled sexual harassment lawyer can overcome the most challenging legal obstacles and pull out victories for employees who deserve justice, even when the chances appear slim. An attorney can also maximize the damages to which a harassment victim is entitled. John Dalton was able to achieve all of this for the employee in the Barnes case. 

Adjudicating the Employee’s Claim

The employee’s claim in the Barnes case was resolved through arbitration. Arbitration is a form of dispute resolution that is notoriously unfavorable for employees seeking redress in claims against their employers. In fact, on a national level, arbitrations are won only about 17% of the time. Despite the low odds of winning at arbitration and the employer’s claim that the employee’s complaint was unsubstantiated, John Dalton was determined to fight for the employee. John knew the employee was telling the truth and deserved justice. 

The employer made no reasonable settlement offer, so John dug in and fought hard on the employee’s behalf in an 18-month arbitration. John sought damages for unlawful sex discrimination, sexual harassment, the employer’s failure to prevent the harassment, and retaliation. John thoroughly briefed the employee’s case, covering every theory for recovery and every defense argument. 

There was an eight day hearing, and at the conclusion of the Barnes case’s arbitration, John Dalton was triumphant. In his 141-page ruling, the arbitrator found in favor of the employee and awarded her compensatory damages for her emotional distress and most of the costs expended on the case. The crux of this victory was likely John Dalton’s ability to expose the employer’s gross mishandling of the employee’s complaints. Despite the odds, John recovered a substantial award for an employee who was honest, hardworking, and deserving of legal relief for the workplace mistreatment she suffered. 

The Law Offices of John Dalton Can Champion Your Rights

When initiating a sexual harassment complaint, you should have an experienced attorney by your side. John Dalton is a highly skilled sexual harassment attorney who is uniquely positioned to guide sexual harassment victims in California to legal victories. John is a former CIA officer who has been practicing law for more than 25 years and has won some of the largest sexual harassment verdicts in California. 

In addition to his talent, experience, and stellar track record, John’s dedication to protecting California workers is a significant asset to his clients. He cannot tolerate bullies in the workplace. John also works diligently to hold harassers and unscrupulous employers to account. If you need professional guidance regarding a workplace dispute, John can help. You can call the Law Offices of John Dalton or contact us online. We offer free case reviews.

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