YAKIMA, Wash. - A federal jury rejected sexual harassment claims by 14 women who said they had been subjected to a sexually hostile work environment while working for one of the nation's largest apple growers.
Lawyers for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed the case on behalf of the Evans Fruit orchard workers. A second trial in a related lawsuit claims that Evans Fruit retaliated against employees who filed harassment complains.
In its lawsuit, the EEOC said female employees of the company's operations in Sunnyside were subjected to unwanted sexual advances by supervisors, including a since-fired foreman. The company responded saying that none of the plaintiffs complained of harassment while employed.