The city of McAllen seems to be turning a page with the departure of an assistant city manager. The official had previously filed a sexual harassment complaint against a former city manager who retired in March.
The city’s investigation into the complaints concluded last November. Independent outside investigators determined that the city manager “at times made comments regarding the appearance and dress of females, as well as other matters, which people have found to be objectionable.”
However, the city stopped short of calling the comments sexual harassment, stating that “those comments that can be corroborated were neither severe nor pervasive, nor of such seriousness as to violate federal or state anti-discrimination laws. These instead are better characterized as totally unacceptable lapses in good judgment.”
Note: The city moved quickly to investigate the complaints and brought in experts to conduct the investigation. It resolved the matter with as little drama as possible, allowing the city manager to retire.
- When workplace romance fizzles, watch out for discipline that looks like discrimination
- Dress, grooming policies should serve bona fide business need
- Different punishments for breaking same rule? Cite specifics to justify harsher discipline
- Have a progressive-discipline system? Great! But reserve right to fire immediately if necessary
- Make sure employees understand policy and process for reporting sexual harassment