Harassment, of any kind, in the workplace is not only inappropriate, it’s also illegal under California laws. Sexual harassment, in particular, can be devastating for an employee. This kind of treatment can create such a hostile work environment that an employee is not able to stand being at work or going to work.

Under California employment law, employees do not have to put up with this type of behavior. Employees have the right to be free of unwanted sexual advances and should not face any retaliation if they speak up about the harassment.

The actress claims that while working as an extra on the set of the popular television show “The Mentalist” she was subjected to sexual harassment and unwanted physical touching. According to the actress, another extra performing on the same television series made inappropriate sexual comments, apparently urging her to have sexual relations with him. Furthermore, the man would often try to grab the actress even after she made it clear the contact was unwanted.

After dealing with this man’s behavior, the actress complained to the casting director and other members of the show’s crew. At this point, the actress went from working five days a week on the show to just two. In addition, the studio stopped using her on other projects. By early 2012, the woman was receiving no work from the studio or the show.

In response to these actions, the woman has sued the man that was harassing her and the studios responsible for producing the show. Besides the harassment itself, the woman claims she was effectively fired from her job in retaliation for complaining about the harassment. The studio claims no wrongdoing and says the harassment was dealt with properly.

This woman is seeking damages related to the unfair treatment she received. As a result of reporting the harassment, exactly what she should have done, the woman lost her job. Not only has the woman suffered emotionally as a result of the harassment, but she has likely been financially impacted by her employer’s retaliation and termination.

Source: Courthouse News Service, “Actress Says She Was Groped on ‘The Mentalist’,” Matt Reynolds, Aug. 21, 2012