Workplace discrimination suit halted in Petaluma

Frank S. Clowney III

A judge in Sonoma County recently sustained challenges to a discrimination case filed against GC Micro, a company based in Petaluma. The suit filed by an ex-employee charged that the CEO of GC Micro engaged in discriminatory practices based on the employee’s sexual orientation. The challenges of filing suit for workplace discrimination were exemplified upon this employee’s dismissal, according to the suit.

The employee, who is homosexual, claims the company recruited her away from a job in Colorado. She says that after joining the company, she was subjected to various forms of harassment aimed at her sexuality.

Specifically, the woman says she was forced to view a religious video that featured an anti-homosexual evangelical minister. The employee claims that upon complaining about having to view the video, she was fired.

She also claims the CEO’s ex-husband, who was also named in the suit, made disparaging comments regarding her orientation. The man was accused also of speaking openly to the woman about his sex life.

Ultimately, the judge presiding over the case tentatively ruled the defendants not liable for discrimination. In addition, the judge stated that any claims of harassment had no basis. However, the judge said that the woman may have grounds to sue GC Micro on the basis of allegedly not following through on promises made regarding employment.

The outcome of this filing demonstrates the necessity of knowing the best course to chart when filing a lawsuit. Even though you may have been discriminated against in an egregious manner, you must be able to demonstrate in court that the violation occurred. A knowledgeable attorney can help you assess which strategy could work best for you given your particular set of circumstances.

Source: The Press Democrat, “Judge sides with Petaluma firm accused of anti-gay discrimination,” Paul Payne, Feb. 25, 2014