Female employees in traditionally male fields have long faced employment difficulties from their colleagues. Whether they are harassed through vulgar comments, given less-desirable jobs because of their gender or otherwise harried, workplace discrimination against women remains alive and well in many Florida firms. Public entities are not exempt from this phenomenon, as demonstrated by a recent sexual harassment suit filed by a female worker at the Sarasota County Jail. A female nurse at the facility alleges that graphic, vulgar images featuring her likeness were passed throughout the facility, causing her to feel humiliated and threatened.
The drawings were allegedly created by an inmate in the facility. Deputies and other staff members then made copies of the images, which featured buxom women in sexual situations, all of whom had the woman’s face. The woman alleges that the sexual harassment began during the autumn months of 2012 and continued through mid-January, when the woman was forced to resign her position because of emotional distress.
Not only were the drawings shown throughout the jail, but deputies are accused of showing the woman the images and asking her if they truly resembled her body. One of those deputies has already been fired because of inappropriate interactions with the inmate who drew the pictures. Information from that internal investigation revealed additional instances of harassment and abuse directed toward the nurse, who administered medication to inmates at the facility.
Incidents occurred throughout the month of December, with more than 30 pornographic images of the woman being discovered during a cell “shakedown.” The woman said she wanted to quit her job because she was fearful and humiliated. She left on Jan. 17 of this year.
Women who are employed in correctional facilities do not deserve to be harassed by staff or inmates. Those workers should enjoy the same protections as all other employees in the facility. In this case, the woman is seeking compensation for mental anguish, loss of employment, medical costs and a variety of other claims in connection with the incidents.
Source: www.heraldtribune.com, “Former Sarasota jail nurse claims harassment” Elizabeth Johnson, Nov. 30, 2013