11/21/2011 // Los Angeles, CA, USA // Keller Grover LLP // California employment lawyer Eric Grover

Los Angeles, CA (Los Angeles Employment Lawyer News) — The long history of sexual harassment in the workplace is once again being brought to light in the wake of the recent allegations of sexual harassment against Republican presidential hopeful Herman Cain, MSNBC reports. California employment lawyer Eric Grover affirms that even with the collegial environment the food industry fosters, inappropriate sexual behavior should never be tolerated.

The attention surrounding sexual harassment in the restaurant industry was spurred by accusations by a growing number of women who claim the former CEO of Godfather’s Pizza sexually harassed them during his tenure with the restaurant industry’s lobbying group. While Cain adamantly denies these claims, the allegations are helping to shed light on a bigger problem—the rampant problem of sexual harassment and inappropriate sexual behavior in the food services industry.

An MSNBC analysis of data from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) revealed, “Of more than 400 discrimination suits and settlements reported by the federal government so far this year, 75 involved sexual harassment, and 26, or 37 percent, involved the food service industry.”

Some have chalked up the high number of sexual harassment incidents to the type of environment present in the food industry—which seeks outgoing employees, who are put into a collegial environment that lends itself to more opportunities for sexual harassing behaviors, because of the certain social characteristics, revealed a 2002 “Sexual Harassment in the Restaurant Industry” study by University of Southwestern Louisiana.

With the sense of a “loose” working environment, it’s not always easy to tell what is sexual harassment, especially if all those involved are laughing and joking. But, says sexual harassment employment attorney Eric Grover, the line needs to be drawn somewhere.

“It’s the employers job to stop any sort of overt sexual behavior and harassment, especially if it is occurring in an environment that has essentially become a breeding ground for inappropriate behaviors. It doesn’t matter if everyone involved is joking or laughing, because if action is not taken to rectify unprofessional conversations and actions while on the job, then employees will perceive that these behaviors are condoned and will continue to escalate,” explains the Los Angeles employment attorney.

Since the Herman Cain allegations are causing the issue to get more attention, we can expect an increase in such suits over the coming year, Eric Grover predicts.

The experienced Los Angeles employment attorneys at Keller Grover LLP are skilled in handling all aspects of employment law cases. If you or someone you know has been a victim of workplace discrimination and harassment based on race, sex, age, or disability, or you had your wage and hour rights violated, contacting a reputable Los Angeles employment lawyer can help get the justice and compensation you deserve.

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