LA Firm Sued for Bikini Holiday Party, Buying Associates Lapdances
While most law firm holiday parties are hotly anticipated by most employees, it seems like the employees at the Century City law firm Glancy Binkow & Goldberg got more than they bargained for at the 2009 party. The Los Angeles Times reports that a former employee has filed a sexual harassment and wrongful termination lawsuit because she alleges that the founding partner Lionel Z. Glancy took his employees to a Los Angeles bikini bar called Fantasy Island after their 2009 holiday party.
The lawsuit claims that Lionel Glancy paid for the employees' admission fees and bought a lap dance for at least one employee.
According to the ABA Journal, former employee Ashlee Ilewicz claims that she was subjected to a hostile work environment at Glancy Binkow & Goldberg because of a fraternity-like atmosphere at the law firm. She alleges that a lawyer at the firm displayed pictures of naked women in his office and that partners of the law firm even gave a male worker a pair of binoculars so that he can "leer at the hot women through the office windows."
As you legal eagles should know, there are two types of sexual harassment under Title VII: quid pro quo and hostile work environment. A hostile work environment is developed when there is conduct unwelcome, based on sex, and pervasive enough to create an offensive or abusive working environment. It remains to be seen whether the law firm contributed to a hostile work environment because this lawsuit is still pending.
As of now, the law firm's attorney Stuart D. Tochner told the legal publication the Daily Journal that the allegations were untrue and that the law firm will defend itself against the lawsuit.