What are my options under the category of discrimination and retaliation by my direct report?

Asked about 2 years ago - Willow Grove, PA

I've been working for the same contracting agency for 1 year & 9 months. I'm assigned to a large pharmaceutical company (PC). My contract was initially for 1-year but was extended per the PC's request. I've received several honors on the PC's recognition board. I received a reward of excellence as well. In October 2012, I was assigned to a new direct report; ever since, I've had problems. He's followed me to my car several times. He brought me flowers. He asks me very personal questions. When I refused all of his gestures, he became retaliatory. I've complained to my agency and they complained to the PC's HR department. It's been 1 month and nothing's been done. I'm very uncomfortable here and I've asked to be reassigned. My agency hasn't reassigned me. What can I do?

Additional information

When I first started working at the PC, I reported directly to the Director of GHH IT Business Operations and Compliance. He was let go by the company and I was reassigned to the Director of Business and Supplier Management. Under his team, he assigned me to one of his team members. His title is Senior Specialist, Business and Supplier Management. In October 2012, I was reassigned to another one of his team members. His title is Specialist, Business and Supplier Management. This is why I just said, "direct report". Thank you.

Attorney answers (3)

  1. Richard Alan Jaffe


    Contributor Level 13


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Rather than complaining to your Agency, it is my recommendation that you bring the allegations of sexual harassment by your "direct report" to the attention of the Pharmaceutical Company HR department and follow whatever protocols are in place for Complaints of this kind.

    In addition, you may consider filing a complaint with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission and/or EEOC. Such Complaints of sexual harassment must be made within 180 days of the alleged conduct.

    It is my recommendation that you contact an attorney experienced in handling Claims of Sexual Harassment and/or Hostile Work Environment to discuss your allegations in greater detail and your rights and possible causes of action resulting from the conduct of your "direct report." It is also my recommendation that you maintain a "Diary" setting forth in detail all of the conduct which you allege rises the level of either sexual harassment or creating a "hostile work environment.

    These type of situations are very tricky and therefore, it is best not to handle them without consulting with an attorney.

    This answer to your legal inquiry is based upon the limited facts stated in your question. Accurate legal advice... more
  2. Andrew Scott Abramson

    Contributor Level 9


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . The facts which you raise may very well support a claim of sexual harassment and retaliation against the “employer”, which the law may deem to be both the contracting agency and pharmaceutical company. Assuming that by "direct report" you mean your supervisor who is a manger the employer coudl be diretly liable. The employer has both a duty to investigate and take necessary remedial action and it critical that you clearly document what has occurred. These kinds of claim are highly fact intensive and facts which will be important may not yet have developed. It is critical that you seek guidance from an experienced employment law attorney as soon as possible. We would be glad to set up a consultation and suggest that you contact our office as soon as possible. Andrew Abramson, Esq., Abramson Employment Law, telephone: 267-470-4742, email: asa@aemploylaw.com

    At Abramson Employment Law our clients are our top priority. We devote our practice to helping employees fight... more
  3. Christopher Edward Ezold


    Contributor Level 17


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Before I respond to your inquiry, I must state that we have not spoken, I have not reviewed the relevant documents and facts, and I do not represent you. Therefore, my discussion below is not a legal opinion, but is informational only. Finally, my discussion applies only to issues to which Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey or Federal law applies, unless otherwise specified.

    That being said, we've dealt with this exact situation repeatedly before in the pharmaceutical industry, You are likely an employee of both companies for the purpose of anti-discrimination/harassment laws. Both the agency AND the PC have an obligation to deal with the issues raised by your complaint. It appears that they have failed to do so. Navigating this minefield both politically and legally is difficult; there are a number of things we would likely recommend that you do to deal with it and protect both yourself and your career.

    If you would like to discuss this matter further, please feel free to contact me at the below address(es) or telephone number.

    /Christopher E. Ezold/
    The Ezold Law Firm, P.C.
    One Belmont Avenue,
    Suite 501
    Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004
    (610) 660-5585

    Answered 8 months ago. Before I respond to your inquiry, I must state that we have not spoken, I have not reviewed... more

Related Topics


Employment law governs employee pay, non-discrimination policies, employment classifications, and hiring and firing at the federal, state, and local levels.

Discrimination in the workplace

Discrimination in the workplace is when one or more employees are treated unfavorably, based on characteristics like age, race, gender, or sexual orientation.

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