EEOC Sues Zale for Sexual Harassment

March 14, 2001

EEOC Sues Zale for Sexual Harassment

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed a federal lawsuit Tuesday against Zale Corp., charging the company with repeated sexual harassment of female employees at a Long Island, NY, store, the New York Times reports. EEOC says the store manager at Bailey, Banks & Biddle in the Roosevelt Field Mall in Long Island made unwelcome sexual comments and repeatedly grabbed and touched female employees.

According to the Times, Zale President Alan Shor said Zale management initiated an investigation immediately after learning of the complaints, and the accused manager was demoted and transferred to another store. Shor said Zale's store managers receive training about sexual harassment and discrimination.

EEOC sued the company rather than the manager on the grounds that Zale did not take effective action to stop the harassment after employees repeatedly complained about it to outside managers, the Times reports. Federal courts have held companies liable for sexual harassment in cases where the company knew about the harassment but did not take strong action to stop it.

For more information about sexual harassment laws and how to protect your company, read these past Professional Jeweler articles: Avoid Sexual Harassment, Insuring Your Employment Practices and Questions to Ask About EPLI.

- by Julia M. Duncan