My car broke down in November at the time I was being promoted to assistant manager settled into a newly opened location. Since then been relying on buses to get to work. However, I have to be at work Wednesday mornings at 5am to cover for the managers day off. The GM offered to help me by giving me rides those days. Since then, He has progressively gone from a kiss on the cheek when I get out of his car to holding my hand the entire ride to work to now deep kissing me last week. I'm afraid to go to the owners of my store and don't know where to turn. This morning he insisted on giving me a ride home in part because i covered for a crew member that didnt show up and did a double shift and i was tired and he apologized but i just dont feel comfortable around him.
Your job duties do not include kissing or holding hands, and it's not going to simplify your life or your employment situation to let the general manager believe that he has these rights.
This is sexual harassment. And acquiescing to it will not strengthen your hand. In fact, acquiescence makes it seem purely consensual and thus undermines your interests.
There are various federal and state laws dealing with sexual harassment. On the federal level, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, as amended, offers you protections assuming that the company has at least 15 employees. I assume this is the case since you indicate there are at least two different locations (possibly much more than two) owned by the company.
There are also state laws in your state that offer protection. In your state, unwelcome sexual advances or conduct of a sexual nature constitutes sexual harassment if submitting to such conduct is even implicity a condition of employment; submitting to or rejecting that conduct is used as a basis for employment decisions; or the conduct substantially interferes with one's work performance or creates an intmidating, hostile, or offensive work environment.
At the very least, you shold start keeping a diary of what happens, when it happens, how it happens, were it happens, and all other details concerning the incident.
Stop accepting rides from the general manager.
Good luck to you.
Michael S. Haber is a New York attorney. As such, his responses to posted inquiries, such as the one above, are limited to his understanding of law in the jurisdiction in which he practices and not to any other jurisdiction. In addition, no response to any posted inquiry should be deemed to constitute legal advice, nor to constitute the existence of an attorney/client or other contractual or fiduciary relationship, inasmuch as rendering legal advice involves the ability of the attorney to ask appropriate questions of the person seeking such advice and to thus gather appropriate information. In addition, an attorney/client relationship is formed only by specific agreement. The purpose of this answer is to provide the questioner with general information, not to outline specific legal rights and remedies.
Go consult with an attorney immediately. Mr. Haber and Mr. Fortgang have given you excellent advice.
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