Parks And Rec Employee Claims Supervisor Sexually Harassed Her
SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A state parks and recreation department employee says she was fired after complaining about her supervisor bragging about her sex life.
Delane Hurley is one of several women who say they became the target of an extremely hostile work environment at their Ocotillo Wells office, by their supervisor, Lisa Seals.
“She wanted to know who I was sleeping with,” Hurley said. “She would often and very publically talk about her sexual relationship with the men who worked there.”
She says Seals loved to talk about her sexual exploits and desires, and allegedly demanded Hurley talk about her sexual lifestyle as a lesbian, or else.
“If I did not share with her about my personal life and private life, she would affect my career,” Hurley said.
An investigation was initiated by the state’s human right office, she said. Stressed by the situation, she took medical leave. And then she was fired.
“Within 24 hours, they sent armed law enforcement to my house.” Hurley said. “They took away my voicemail, they took away my email, they emptied my office, tore the poster off my wall.”
And Seals allegedly turned up the heat on witnesses.
“She told my coworkers they had to lie to the investigators, or else, and they all suffered consequences for telling the truth,” Hurley said.
Hurley says judgment was found against Seals, but she still stayed on the job. Hurley eventually got her job back, but nowhere near her home.
“So instead of doing anything about her and the complaints they transferred me 500 miles away,” Hurley said.
Attorney Wendy Musell now represents Hurley and several other women in harassment lawsuits against the state.
She’s looking for not only a culture change, but accountability.
“None of these women set out to sue. Each gave the department a year to make it right,” Musell said. “They took it as far as they could internally and asked, ‘Please make this right,’ and they didn’t. As a matter of fact, it got worse.”
The victims are still hoping for justice.
“There’s no justice.” Hurley said. “I’m just waiting to see truth prevail.”
Musell says the cost of just one of these suits has already racked up more than $600,000 dollars in legal fees that could have been avoided had the state acted immediately.