Fry’s Electronics Incorporation will be paying a total of $2.4 million to settle a lawsuit and numerous sexual harassment and retaliation cases that were first brought to light by the Blankenship Law Firm as well as the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, commonly referred to as the EEOC. There are a number of former employers who will now receive some of the two million dollar settlement. Two former employees of Fry’s in Seattle, Mr. Ka Lam and Ms. America Rios have both been able to settle sexual harassment and retaliations suits against the electronic company. The company currently employs thousands of individuals in areas all around the United States. Forbes has provided information that shows the company earned revenue of around $2 billion just last year, back in 2011.
This case is one of the biggest cases that have been reported by the EEOC in the United States. The Blankenship Law Firm chose to represent the employees and worked on the negotiation of the settlement along with the prosecution of the case. The settlement took place almost directly after a trial was completed by the Blankenship Law Firm. The law firm and the EEOC both requested a sanction of the company after they found out that the computer and its hard drives that would provide insight and evidence of the case was destroyed. It was also found out that Fry’s did not provide information on instance in which sexual harassment had occurred in a store that is located in Renton, Washington.
One of the employees who were represented, Ms. Rios, was a 20-year-old sales associate at the store and during her time working for the company, she was constantly sexually harassed by one of the assistant store managers. Not only was she sexually harassed at work, she also received sexualized text message from the manager even though she constantly asked him to stop texting her and leave her alone. She reported the harassment to her supervisor; Ka Lam. Lam opened an investigation and put his own career at risk by doing so. He reported the harassment to the directors at the Fry’s Headquarters, which is located in San Jose. Lam has said, “I feared retaliation from the local managers, but everything in me said that I could not live with myself if I did not speak up. Whatever the consequences, it had to stop. I had to report it.” Although Lam made complaints, the company allowed a close friend of the harassing store manager to investigate the case, which simply was not fair to Ms. Rios or Mr. Lam.Settlement for Fry’s Electronics Incorporation by Harrison Barnes