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EEOC files sexual harassment, retaliation suit against winery

Posted On: Aug. 25, 2022 2:27 PM CST


The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed a sexual harassment and retaliation lawsuit on Thursday against a California winery and its parent company.

The EEOC filed suit against Paso Robles, California-based Justin Vineyards & Winery LLC and its parent company, The Wonderful Co. LLC, based in Los Angeles, in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, charging they had allowed female employees to be subjected to sexual harassment, according to the lawsuit in U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission v. Justin Vineyards & Winery LLC, The Wonderful Co. LLC, and Does 1-10, inclusive.

The EEOC said that beginning in 2017, male managers at the winery’s production and restaurant locations were allowed to sexually harass female employees daily through unwanted and repeated sexual advances, sexual comments and sexually offensive conduct, including unwelcome physical contact.

The EEOC said the winery and its parent company did not investigate the complaints it received nor take steps to prevent the harassment, and some women who complained were retaliated against or forced to leave the workplace.

The lawsuit states that in some cases, human resources made accusations against the accusers or blamed victims for the harassment.

The EEOC charged the companies with violating Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Wonderful did not respond to a request for comment.