“In my opinion this award is historic,” Charny said. “The current context of #MeToo is empowering juries, and it empowered this jury to send a message of this velocity … Gender-based hostility in the workplace will no longer be tolerated and juries are sending the message loud and clear.”
Charny also noted that Goddard recently won a $1.45 million verdict in a disability discrimination case brought by a female worker.
Goddard said in a statement, “I hope this verdict encourages more women to report sexual harassment, that it encourages companies to protect employees from sexual harassment, and that it inspires women to turn to the court when their employers fail to protect them.”
Kenneth Kelly, a partner at Epstein Becker & Green in Manhattan, represented American Sugar, the lone defendant at trial. He did not return a call seeking comment.
The verdict was for gender–based hostility in the workplace, Charny said. The trial began Feb. 26 and ended March 2 with the verdict and award. Gabrielle Vinci, an associate at Nesenoff & Miltenberg in Manhattan, also helped to represent Mayo-Coleman at trial.
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