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  • Riverside County Pays $490,000 to Settle Sexual Harassment Suit

    Riverside County has agreed to pay nearly half a million dollars in order to settle a sexual harassment suit brought against them in 2011 by Pamela Luna. Luna is a former interim administrator of health and community programs for First 5 Riverside.  First 5 Riverside funds programs that aid in the development of young children up to the age of 5. She worked at First 5 Riverside from May 2010 to August 2011, and alleged that during the course of her employment there, Dr. Eric Frykman made inappropriate comments and had inappropriate behavior toward her.

    According to Luna’s attorney, “In addition to verbally harassing Luna, Dr. Frykman (a former county employee) repeatedly and openly ogled her, and touched her without her consent… Attempts to investigate and resolve the harassment were not taken seriously at any level of the county’s chain of command, leaving Ms. Luna twisting in the wind until she was terminated in retaliation for her complaints.”

    If you feel you are sexually harassed, chances are you were, so you need to report it, without fear of retaliation. In this case, Luna was allegedly fired as result of her having reported it. Fortunately though, there is (as seen from the settlement) legal recourse for such actions. So, if you are the victim of sexual harassment in the workplace, do not allow the fear of retaliation to stop you from taking action by contacting a sexual harassment attorney. An Orange County sexual harassment attorney can evaluate your case and offer insight into the best legal courses of action.

    In this case, Luna sought damages for emotional and physical trauma, loss of economic opportunity and loss of reputation. Emotional trauma is very common in cases of this nature. However, an Orange County sexual harassment attorney can help alleviate some of the emotional anguish by putting your mind at ease in knowing that – despite how vulnerable you may be made to feel – California law does protect you.

    In the case of Luna, the Board of Supervisors approved the settlement in late November, to end the case which was brought about in April 2011. The county agreed to settle out of court, given the costs that would have been involved in litigating the case.

    An Orange County sexual harassment lawyer can give you more information on California state laws, as they apply specifically to your case, and can help determine the best courses of action – whether at mediation for settlement (as was the case here), or in court.  An Orange County sexual harassment attorney can be contacted at (949) 260-9131.