Councilman Under Fire For Harassment, Denies Claims

Sexual harassment in California can take two official forms: hostile work environment or quid pro quo sexual harassment. An employer permits a hostile work environment when offensive sexual comments and even touching occur. Quid pro quo, on the other hand, involves supervisors or coworkers requiring other employees to perform sexual favors in exchange for professional advancement. One woman who was employed by the office of Los Angeles City Councilman Jose Huizar claims that she suffered from quid pro quo harassment and was fired because she refused to have sex with the man.

The woman took a new job with the Bureau of Sanitation in late April, when she officially announced the allegations against her former employer. The woman alleges that she was subject to both quid pro quo and hostile work environment while working for the councilman. She has filed an official complaint with the courts that will provide her with the right to sue in the future.

Not only did the harassment force the woman into another job role, but the councilman also required the woman to answer embarrassing personal questions that compromised her ability to run for office in the future. As a result of this allegation and others, the council is working to convene a task force that would investigate such claims against the city’s elected officials. The committee has only been convened four times since its creation in the 1990s. Its most notable case was the review of sexual harassment claims against former Councilman Nate Holden.

The victim and her attorney say they are not yet willing to discuss the case openly, though future developments are sure to be uncovered as the process progresses.

If your boss has demanded sexual favors for career advancement, you could be eligible to receive financial compensation for your hardship. You do not have to face the trials of sexual harassment on your own; instead, seek the services of a qualified employment attorney. These professionals can help you learn more about your employment rights, helping you get the money you deserve.

Source:, “Jose Huizar denies former staffer’s sexual harassment allegations” David Zahniser, Aug. 12, 2013