Sexually Assaulted & Harassed, Worker Says

     LAS VEGAS (CN) – Allegiant Air harassed a flight attendant after a co-worker sexually assaulted her, and fired her after she complained to the CEO, the woman claims in court.
     Karin Anderson sued the company in Federal Court on May 21, claiming that in October 2004, when she was a base manager, a co-worker sexually assaulted her, and when police arrived, “an Allegiant captain instructed the police to leave (her) in her room unconscious.”
     The complaint does not say whether the police acceded to this request. But on the return flight to Las Vegas, Anderson says, “the same Allegiant captain summoned Ms. Anderson to the cockpit wherein he proceeded to intimidate Ms. Anderson by asking her if she had a problem with sex.”
     Allegiant then “required the entire flight crew sign confidentiality agreements related to the sexual assault,” she says.
     When she returned to work in November that year, she says, “multiple co-workers” asked her about the sexual assault, causing Allegiant to pull her off a flight.
     Though a superior apologized for the confidentiality violations, coworkers continued “teasing and taunting” her in 2006 and the airline did not stop them, she says.
     Then in June 2011, according to the complaint, “an Allegiant flight attendant announced to attendees at an Allegiant party that Ms. Anderson was raped and that Allegiant paid off a witness.”
     When she reported the violation of the confidentiality agreement, Anderson says, a woman identified only as Ms. Clements told her, “‘The easiest thing for me to do was to fire you.'”
     After more harassment, including allegations of faking an injury, she wrote an email to Allegiant CEO Maury Gallagher, and the airline placed her on payment protection on June 5, 2014, according to the complaint.
     Anderson says she met with Allegiant’s human resources personnel, who “disregarded (her) request not to read aloud her email” and instead “encouraged it in an attempt to shame” her.
     On Nov. 9, 2014, she says, the airline told her “to resign from her position so she couldn’t be fired.”
     She says she submitted a letter of resignation but revoked it when Allegiant wanted her to sign a separation agreement that included a release of claims.
     When she revoked her resignation, the airline fired her, on Nov. 21.
     She seeks back pay, front pay, and compensatory and punitive damages for gender discrimination, retaliation, negligent hiring, training and supervision, negligent retention, and emotional distress.
     She is represented by Las Vegas M. Lani Esteban-Trinidad, who could not be reached for comment over the Memorial Day weekend. Nor could officials for Allegiant.

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