A jury has awarded a woman more than $13 million in back pay and damages in a sexual harassment lawsuit. While sexual harassment is one of the most well known forms of employment discrimination, it is not clearly defined. It is not a single instance of name-calling, a request for a date, or a leering look. Rather, in order to prove sexual harassment, you must show that you have been subjected to unwelcome conduct that creates a hostile environment based on your sex that is sufficiently severe and pervasive to alter the terms and conditions of your employment.
In this instance, the woman entered evidence of pervasive name calling – one man called her “Big Girl”, belittling her 6-foot-tall stature, another made obscene gestures, and a third dismissed her complaints of harassment, saying that she was losing her mind. Rather than addressing the discriminatory conduct as required by law, the harassment continued.