Female workers sue for $4m over alleged sexual harassment at work

Female workers at a giant tomato glasshouse in Adelaide’s north are suing one of the country’s biggest fresh produce companies for almost $4 million, alleging they were repeatedly sexually harassed at work.

Female workers at a giant tomato glasshouse in Adelaide’s north are suing one of the country’s biggest fresh produce companies for almost $4 million, alleging they were repeatedly sexually harassed at work.

According to a report published in The Age on Saturday, the case – which was lodged last year in the Federal Court – has been brought by 12 women employed by a labour hire firm.

They had performed contract work for Perfection Fresh at a farm at Two Wells.

Documents released by the court to the newspaper outline the seasonal workers’ claims of sexual harassment, which they allege was carried out by two men who were in positions of “authority, trust and control in relation to the applicants”.

The women claim sexual harassment was widespread across the workforce, an allegation strenuously denied by Perfection Fresh. A court order prevents identifying the women.

The first man is alleged to have made unwanted sexual advances and requests for sexual favours.

He allegedly told one woman he wanted to have sex with her at work, and offered to organise them a motel room, asked to kiss her and regularly touched her in a sexualised manner.

During one alleged incident, while the woman was picking vegetables, he is said to have approached her from behind and pushed his hands down the front of her pants.

The court documents say the second man is alleged to have touched, squeezed and grabbed the workers’ bottoms and breasts on dozens of occasions,

The women are seeking $3.9m in compensation and damages, and want the court to order that Perfection Fresh conduct more training on sexual harassment.

In its response lodged with the court, Perfection Fresh says the union first alerted it to a complaint of sexual harassment against the first man, who was fired. Complaints of sexual harassment were then received about the second man, and he was suspended and resigned a month later.

The company says that while some of the allegations were substantiated by their investigation, it was not aware of some of the other allegations in the court claim.

Perfection Fresh is one of the country’s largest private fruit and vegetable growers and is a major supplier to the supermarket chains. It operates farms across the country, including the Two Wells tomato glasshouse.

The company’s website says that the “state-of-the-art” sustainable glasshouse facility is the largest of its type in the southern hemisphere and spans 43 hectares.

Source: Adelaide Now

Leave a Comment


Warning: Undefined array key "sfsi_mastodonIcon_order" in /home/monitlive/public_html/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-social-media-icons/libs/controllers/sfsi_frontpopUp.php on line 175

Warning: Undefined array key "sfsi_mastodon_display" in /home/monitlive/public_html/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-social-media-icons/libs/controllers/sfsi_frontpopUp.php on line 268

Warning: Undefined array key "sfsi_snapchat_display" in /home/monitlive/public_html/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-social-media-icons/libs/controllers/sfsi_frontpopUp.php on line 277

Warning: Undefined array key "sfsi_reddit_display" in /home/monitlive/public_html/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-social-media-icons/libs/controllers/sfsi_frontpopUp.php on line 274

Warning: Undefined array key "sfsi_fbmessenger_display" in /home/monitlive/public_html/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-social-media-icons/libs/controllers/sfsi_frontpopUp.php on line 271

Warning: Undefined array key "sfsi_tiktok_display" in /home/monitlive/public_html/wp-content/plugins/ultimate-social-media-icons/libs/controllers/sfsi_frontpopUp.php on line 265
error

Enjoy this blog? Please spread the word :)