CWS 3.0: May 15, 2013

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Retaliation Against Temps Leads to $1.5 Million Judgment

A logistics firm that fired three temporary workers at a Memphis, Tenn., warehouse because they complained about sexual harassment faces a $1.5 million judgment, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission reported Friday.

The firm, New Breed Logistics, also retaliated against a male employee because he opposed the harassment and agreed to serve as a witness, according to the EEOC. New Breed is based in High Point, N.C.

The judgment was the result of a seven-day jury trial. The $1.5 million includes $177,094 in back pay, $486,000 in compensatory damages and $850,000 in punitive damages, according the the EEOC.

“Temporary employees, as were the claimants in this case, are a vital part of the country’s workforce, helping businesses to distribute goods across the United States and the world in a timely and efficient manner,” said EEOC Regional Attorney Faye Williams. “We hope this case and verdict serve to remind employers of their responsibility to protect temporary employees placed in their facilities to work. [Worksite employers] must provide a safe place for employees, including providing a sexual harassment  policy to the workers, conducting training in the workplace about the policy  and timely investigating claims of harassment.”

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