Each year, many Texas residents take the opportunity to enjoy the country's national parks. They might be surprised to know that even in such beautiful surroundings, the specter of sexual harassment looms over workers. In fact, more than one sexual harassment claim has been filed against several of national parks.
For example, more than 18 employees at Yosemite made allegations of misconduct that includes sexual harassment. The working atmosphere is described as being toxic due to the severity of the allegations. Yellowstone has also recently made news regarding claims of sexual exploitation, retaliation and intimidation.
The U.S. Department of Interior says that women employed at the Grand Canyon are victims of retaliation if they refused a male worker's demand for sex. The superintendent at a park in Florida was reassigned amid allegations of a hostile work environment that also included sexual harassment. The National Park Service's deputy director of operations admitted that the problem exists at several of the 413 parks under its jurisdiction. The agency is taking steps to curtail the harassment and other misconduct, but for many of the women who work at the parks, it is too little, too late.
Like Texas residents who are victims of sexual harassment and retaliation in their jobs, the women subjected to these behaviors have been humiliated, degraded and marginalized during their careers. Employees who have been sexually harassed have the right to file a complaint with their employers. If the matter is not adequately handled within the company or agency, an employee may exercise other legal remedies that are available, including filing litigation if appropriate.
Source: NBC News, "Sexual Harassment Rampant at National Parks, Officials Say", Sept. 23, 2016