Comments cost boss his job, may cost company more

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in Discrimination and Harassment,Firing,Human Resources

A former employee of H&W Industrial Services in Longview is suing the painting and cleaning contractor for sexual discrimination and harassment after a supervisor allegedly made comments about her sexual orientation.

Mary Jimenez was hired by H&W in February 2008 to clean Texas state highway rest areas. According to Jimenez, upon arriving at the job site, a supervisor told her he “did not work with women.”

Jimenez alleges that H&W then sent her to work at a different rest area and hired two men to perform the work at the original job site. Jimenez claims that the same supervisor later said to her, “We all want to know, just what are you?”

When Jimenez responded that she was married and had a daughter, the supervisor allegedly responded that her life was a cover and that she was obviously gay. Jimenez also claims that he directed derogatory language at her. When Jimenez complained, H&W fired the supervisor.

But then, Jimenez’s lawsuit charges, another supervisor began retaliating against her. Eventually, Jimenez was fired.

When the EEOC investigated and found that the company’s reasons for transferring and firing Jimenez weren’t credible, it issued her a right-to-sue letter. Her lawsuit seeks actual, compensatory and punitive damages, in addition to attorneys’ fees, court costs and interest.

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