Federal employee subjected to sexual harassment. Complainant filed an Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) complaint alleging discrimination on the basis of race, sex, and reprisal. Specifically that she was subjected to sexual harassment.  At the conclusion of the investigation, Complainant did not request a hearing so the Agency issued a final decision. The FAD concluded that Complainant had proved she was subjected to sexual harassment. However, the FAD held the Agency was not liable because it had taken “prompt and effective remedial action” upon learning of the harassment. The Complainant appealed.

On appeal, the EEOC’s Office of Federal Operations (OFO) noted that the only “corrective” action the Agency took in regards to the discrimination claims was to remove the Complainant from the workplace by putting her on administrative leave. The OFO held that such actions did not insulate the Agency from liability for sexual harassment as reassigning the person targeted for harassment is not appropriate corrective action. The OFO remanded and ordered the Agency to assess the damages that Complainant was entitled to.

Margaret M. v. Dep’t of Veterans Affairs, EEOC Appeal No. 0120151790 (Jan. 11, 2018) https://www.eeoc.gov/sites/default/files/migrated_files/decisions/0120151790.pdf

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