Sexual discrimination in the workplace is illegal in California. However, as we have learned, thanks to the #MeToo movement, women and men are treated differently in the workplace. The former general manager of the Los Angeles Sparks has filed a lawsuit against the team alleging she was fired for making complaints about inappropriate sexual relationships involving the team president and managing partner. At The Kaufman Law Firm, our Los Angeles sexual harassment attorneys want to discuss this case.
News has come out that Penny Toler, the former general manager of the Los Angeles Sparks, has filed a lawsuit against the team.
The Sparks fired Toler on October 4th, approximately two weeks after a post-game tirade that included a racial slur. In her lawsuit, Toler says that if she were a man, she would still be employed by the team. Toler claims that her termination had less to do with her tirade than with retaliation after she raised several complaints about workplace misconduct.
Specifically, Toler says that Christine Simmons, the former team president, and Eric Holoman, the team’s managing partner, “…were engaged in an extramarital affair” while Simmons was with the team. Toler says that this relationship made doing her job difficult.
Toler has been with the franchise as a player or general manager since its founding in 1997. In her lawsuit, Toler describes a dramatic atmosphere surrounding the team that included sexual relationships between Simmons and the coach, a player, and a ball boy.
Regarding the tirade that was the official cause of Toler’s firing, “It looks like she was singled out and treated differently because she was a woman,” says attorney Dawn Collins. “Coaches speak to their players to get them fired up, many coaches use harsh language and far more controversial language.”
Toler says that she was treated differently from former coach Brian Agler. Toler said that Agler not only verbally abused players and was not disciplined, but also had an inappropriate sexual relationship with a player.
Toler said that her contract was set to expire on March 31, 2020, and that she has tried to work with the Sparks to receive the pay she feels she is owed and to clear her name. Unfortunately, these talks did not go anywhere and Toler said she felt she had no other choice but to file this lawsuit.
If you or somebody you care about faces sexual discrimination in the workplace, seek legal assistance as soon as possible. At The Kaufman Law Firm, our dedicated and experienced team will investigate your claim and work to determine whether you are entitled to any compensation, including:
Your job is more than just a source of income. It is a major part of your lifestyle. If you have been the victim of wrongful termination, wrongful demotion or any kind of discriminatory business practices, it is time to take action and contact a Ventura employment law attorney that can help. Attorney Matthew A. Kaufman and the team at The Kaufman Law Firm bring experience and a vast arsenal of legal resources to help clients recover the money they deserve.
To learn more, contact our Westlake Village or Los Angeles law office today and schedule an initial consultation to discuss your case.