Sex and Sexual Harassment

Sex discrimination involves treating someone unfavorably because of their sex. As with all EEOC laws,

this relates to hiring, firing, pay, job assignments, promotions, layoffs, training, and fringe benefits. This

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law directly ties into sexual harassment laws, which include unwelcome sexual advances, requests for

sexual favors, and other verbal or physical harassment of a sexual nature. The victim can be male or

female, and sexual harassment can occur female to female, female to male, male to female, and male to

male.

Retaliation

In all the laws mentioned, the EEOC set of laws makes it illegal to fire, demote, harass, or retaliate against

people because they filed a charge of discrimination, complained about discrimination, or participated in

employment discrimination proceedings. Perhaps one of the most high-profile sexual harassment and

retaliation cases was that of Sanders v. Thomas. Isiah Thomas, then coach of the New York Knicks, fired

Anucha Browne Sanders because she hired an attorney to file sexual harassment claims charges. The jury

awarded Browne Sanders $11.6 million in punitive charges because of the hostile work environment

Thomas created and another $5.6 million because Browne Sanders was fired for complaining. [3] A portion

of the lawsuit was to be paid by Madison Square Garden and James Dolan, chairman of Cablevision, the

parent company of Madison Square Garden and the Knicks. Browne Sanders’s lawyers successfully argued

that the inner workings of Madison Square Garden were hostile and lewd and that the former marketing

executive of the organization subjected her to hostility and sexual advances. Thomas left the organization

as coach and president in 2008. As in this case, there are large financial and public relations penalties not

only for sexual harassment but also for retaliation after a harassment suit has been filed.

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