Harris V. Forklift Systems Case Summary

915 Words4 Pages
In the case of Harris v. Forklift Systems, the plaintiff, Teresa Harris, brought a Title VII action against her former employer, Forklift Systems, Inc., an equipment rental company. She claims that Forklift Systems had created a sexually hostile work environment. Harris had worked for Forklift as a manager from April 1985 to October 1987. A Judge heard the case and found that during the period of Harris’ employment, Forklift’s President, Charles Hardly, subjected Harris to numerous offensive remarks and unwanted sexual innuendos heard the case. Specifically, the court found that Hardy had, on a number of occasions, asked plaintiff and other female employees to retrieve coins from his front pants pocket, also asked them to retrieve objects that he had thrown on the ground in front of them and commented, using sexual…show more content…
The U.S. Supreme Court came to a unanimous decision, reiterated its earlier decisions that conduct, which is merely offensive, does not violate Title VII. The Court's verdict in Harris reaffirmed and clarified, rather than changed, the elements necessary for proving hostile environment sexual harassment. The decision is fully consistent with the Commission's "Guidelines on Discrimination Because of Sex," and its policy guidance. Accordingly, Harris requires no change in Commission policy or in the how the Commission investigates charges. The Court in Harris adopted the "totality of the circumstances" approach which the Commission had previously set forth in its "Guidelines on Discrimination Because of Sex" and in its Policy Guidance "Current Issues of Sexual Harassment." Thus, in evaluating welcomeness and whether conduct was sufficiently severe or pervasive to constitute a violation, investigators should continue to "look at the record as a whole and at the totality of the circumstances, such as the nature of the sexual advances and the context in which the alleged incidents occurred." The Court also noted that the factors that indicate

More about Harris V. Forklift Systems Case Summary

Open Document