5 Latina Kitchen Workers Sue McCormick & Schmick’s for Sexual Harassment

Gladys Fuentes, right, one of five female kitchen workers, in Boston speaks about her experiences while detailing a sexual harassment lawsuit the women are filing against McCormick & Schmick’s, a national restaurant chain featuring seafood and steaks, on Dec. 12, 2017, in Boston.
AP Photo/Stephan Savoia

Five Latina kitchen workers filed a sexual harassment lawsuit Tuesday against the national seafood chain McCormick & Schmick’s, alleging that they were subjected to lewd comments and groping by male employees, including the executive chef, at the Faneuil Hall restaurant in Boston.

The charges are explicit, and wide-ranging.

According to the lawsuit, the chef grabbed his crotch and told one of the women, “This is your food”; a sous chef and supervisor trapped a woman in a walk-in cooler and groped her; and a coworker rubbed his groin against a woman’s back while pinning her against a table. A supervisor and coworker also made graphic comments about oral sex.

“The harassment that I endured made me feel humiliated,” one of the plaintiffs, Gladys Fuentes, said in a statement. “When I get home, all I can do is think about what has happened. I cry a lot. I cannot sleep at night,”

“I feel like I am being treated like a prostitute,” Santiago Cruz, another of the plaintiffs, said in a statement.

The complaint was filed by Fair Work P.C. and the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice in Suffolk Superior Court, following a ruling by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission that there was reasonable cause to believe that the restaurant chain discriminated against the women based on their sex.

Landry’s Inc., the Houston restaurant group that owns McCormick & Schmick’s, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Click here to read more.

SOURCE: The Boston Globe, Katie Johnston