Salomon Sex Discrimination Settlement: Arbitration Panel Awards Employee for First Time
A three-person arbitration panel last Thursday ordered securities firm Salomon Smith Barney to pay roughly $3.2 million in compensatory and punitive damages to a female employee, as part of a 1997 settlement in a sex-discrimination lawsuit. Initiated in 1996 by three women working in Garden City, New York for then-Smith Barney, the lawsuit quickly ballooned into a class-action case, with almost 2,000 female employees charging a sexually hostile work environment company-wide. While 95 percent of the women have accepted settlement offers from the company, 91 cases remain pending. Tameron Keyes, the second employee to have rejected private settlement offers and opt for arbitration, is the first to receive an award.
Arbitration documents reveal that in the early 1990s, male coworkers at Keyes’ Los Angeles office created “a work place permeated with discriminatory intimidation, ridicule and insults,” which included playing porn videos, having phone sex on speakerphone, and hiring strippers to perform during work hours, according to the Associated Press.
A 2001 survey released by the non-profit group Catalyst indicated that one-third of women working in the seven top Wall Street securities firms reported a hostile work environment, where they faced unwanted sexual attention, crude remarks, or unequal treatment. Besides Salomon, Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley Dean Witter have also faced sex-discrimination complaints.
In related news, Ford Motor Co. yesterday settled a sexual harassment lawsuit, involving a female plant employee who “was subjected to unwelcome sexual talk, innuendoes, jokes, touching, staring, whistling and intimidation,” according to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) complaint, reported by the Los Angeles Times. While the sum of the settlement has not been disclosed, Ford has already agreed to provide sexual harassment training to managers. The settlement awaits approval from a federal judge.
Media Resources: Bloomberg.com 12/14/02; Associated Press 12/17/02, 12/27/02; LA Times 12/27/02; Dow Jones 12/16/02
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The Oklahoma Coalition for Reproductive Justice, together with a local abortion clinic in Tulsa, challenged HB 2684 in September, arguing that the law was an unconstitutional restriction on non-surgical abortion in the earliest weeks of pregnancy. . . .
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UPS announced on Monday in a memo to employees, and in a brief filed with the US Supreme Court, that the company will begin offering temporary, light-duty positions to pregnant workers on January 1, 2015. . . .
10/30/2014 North Dakota Medical Students Speak Out Against Measure 1 - Medical students at the University of North Dakota School of Medicine and Health Sciences are asking North Dakotans to vote no on Measure 1, a personhood measure on the state ballot this fall.
The students issued published a letter in the Grand Forks Herald stating that they opposed Measure 1 in part because they are against "the government's taking control of the personal health care decisions of its citizens." Nearly 60 UND School of Medicine students signed the letter, citing concerns over the "very broad and ambiguous language" used in the proposed amendment, which has no regard for serious and life-threatening medical situations such as ectopic pregnancies.
Measure 1 would change the North Dakota state constitution to create an "inalienable right to life" for humans "at any stage of development" - including the moment of fertilization and conception. . . .