A lawsuit was recently filed against the Knox County Emergency Management Agency in Ohio, which claims a senior dispatcher sexually harassed other employees.
The lawsuit, filed by six female workers, alleges the director of the agency continuously harassed those calling into the emergency center, which led to a hostile work environment. The plaintiffs claim the male co-worker's behavior began in 2009.
Furthermore, the lawsuit alleges the county sheriff, commissioners and other members of the 9-1-1 and EMA boards worked together to deprive the plaintiffs a safe work environment soon after they failed to stop the director's actions. These members also failed to reprimand the director after an investigation was conducted and did not protect the plaintiffs from retribution from the defendant after the search, the suit states. In all, 16 allegations are documented regarding the defendant''s behavior.
"The conduct of Defendant Hess [based on these 16 allegations] was unwelcomed and offensive to Plaintiffs and were done to Plaintiffs on account of their sex, female," the court document states "[The] defendant['s] conduct was intentional and malicious and with wrongful disrespect of the rights of the plaintiffs."
The case highlights the importance of businesses following and enforcing legal processes among all of its employees. Failure to do so may result in fines and lead to expensive professional liability lawsuits.