According to Charlotte, even the top executive participated in the harassment. "John Burgess, the owner, had his assistant proposition me to have sex with him," she says. "She started telling me a story of how he sleeps with women in the company and how I can get a better job if I do sleep with him."
Shortly after Charlotte rejected her boss's proposition, she says, she was demoted. "The next day I went to the [Human Resources] department and spoke with the manager," Charlotte says. "She looked at me and shrugged her shoulders and said, 'That's how he is.'"
Even though she said she complained, Charlotte claims his behavior became more persistent. "He started calling me every single day on the phone," she says. "Paging me into his office. Making comments to me about sleeping with him. One day he told me he wanted me to leave work with him to go have sex with him."
Denise claims she, too, was harassed by John Burgess. "He was asking me about how often I had sex and telling me you only have so much time before you're unattractive. And he used to always tell me, come and see me. And I knew that he was interested in me, so of course I never went to see him."
Denise and Charlotte finally quit their jobs and they joined a pending class action lawsuit along with 101 other women who worked for the same company.
A statement released by the company said: "The company has continually and consistently denied the allegations and has cooperated with the court by not publicly discussing the case. As such, the company cannot and will not deviate from the court decree and believes that any comment by either party on the matter is totally inappropriate."