In 2004 when I was working for 7-11 in Spring Hill Florida. A male in his late teens or early twenties wanted to buy a pack of cigarettes. I ask for his I.D. to see if he was of age to purchase a pack of Newports. He went irate, and I did not know he was a boyfriend of my co-workers. I was doing my job under Florida Law.
These co-workers I did not get along with very well since I transferred to that store. They had a chip on their shoulder and shown hostility in the workplace because they had a resentment toward certain types of males. It was not just me.
The following weekend they tried to set me up about my preferences of what type of lady I want to date. That did not work. The next workday I was called inside the manager’s office and was informed I am being accused of sexual harassment saying I inappropriately touched a female coworker. I know this took me by surprise because I knew I did not do such a thing. The female who accused me was a basket case from the beginning.
When they sent an investigator to interview both parties. The lady they sent from the main office to investigate the accusation who had an ax to grind. In her eyes, was I was guilty because I am a man, and she was to be believed without question and treated her like she was the victim. I WAS THE REAL VICTIM.The investigator was not competent on how to conduct a impartial investigation. She was on a crusade and shown not to be objective at all.
The investigator did not bother to check the credibility of the accuser and her motives. If woman sent from headquarters dug deeper and interviewed witnesses who were regular customers would have told the investigator that the reason why they accused me of sexual harassment is because they were sore at me for asking her boyfriend for ID to buy a pack of cigarettes. Any seasoned detective would find her a liar. It would be an open and shut case as a trumped up accusation.
When the security tapes were looked at. There was nothing to prove I touched her and even talked to her. Still this investigator was trying to look for something that was not there.
The female investigator even ignored the other lady coworkers that knew this accusation was false that seen right through it. The investigator was selectively choosing the evidence trying to justify sexual harassment. She was on a personal crusade. The kind of person you do not want to lead an investigation.
I found something to challenge the credibility of my accuser who was found on the employee journal that is used as communication between shifts. She used it to write about the men in the workplace were inferior by her sick standards, which shown her hostility to men she worked with. 7-11 refused to hold her accountable for what she written that created a hostile work environment.
When the investigation findings resulted of being unfounded. Still the damage was done. My mistake was I talked to the investigator. I did not have to make a statement to her. I am innocent and the burden of proof lies with 7-11 to come up with the proof sexual harassment happened, which never did.
Why I say don’t talk or plead the fifth. Don’t incriminate yourself if you are innocent. My investigator used my innocent words and twisted them to use against me in the final report. Silence is golden. Don’t talk so they can’t twist your words later. The employee journal I had in my possession, I should have kept and not give back to 7-11 as leverage. It was evidence I should have taken to a lawyer to take legal action later. By the way, nothing was done to my accuser for writing the hostile words in the journal shows me there is a double standard when it comes to sexual harassment against male and female.
Sexual harassment has become weaponized in the 1990s until now. Political correctness and the Feminist movement have used sexual harassment to take it to the extremes to attack good men. I read about innocent men being fired because a woman claimed of being sexually harassed to retaliate against him because she did not get her way. The employers terminated the man without question as a knee-jerk reaction, so they would not want to get sued. Later, they find out the female accuser. She does this scam for monetary gain when a back-ground check is done on her.
I ask those who investigate claims of sexual harassment in the workplace. Keep this thought in mind. Remembering the person who is accused has to be presumed innocent until proven otherwise. Check the motives why sexual harassment was used. All angles of the case has to be looked at. The accused might be innocent. His reputation and his livelihood is at stake. It could destroy his marriage and family for nothing. Be objective and impartial.
If sexual harassment happened. It will be obvious and will be found out. A good seasoned investigator who is impartial knows how to find the truth. If the accuser has the credibility to back up the claim. So be it. If the man can’t restrain himself and uses coercion or inappropriate gestures, than fire him. If she is lying to retaliate or looking for monetary gain. Then she should be terminated.
It has been almost 15 years since this happened. I have forgiven my accuser and wish her well. To be accused of something that is false was a very traumatic experience. To be dragged through the coals being treated like I was a deviant sexual monster by the investigators because I am a male. These tactics wounded my pride and dignity. It was very dehumanizing. It was a lot of mental anguish and emotionally draining. It hurts to be treated like I am guilty because I am a man.
25 years later when the feminist used Anita Hill, who lied to the Senate claiming Justice Clearance Thomas sexual harassed her. Ever since that drama happened. The feminist went into high gear redefining sexual harassment is to attack the males in the workplace… The definition of sexual harassment has broadened beyond common sense that done more harm than good. It has harmed the relations between male and female in the workplace where mundane activity can be construed as sexual harassment.
I see the tide starting to turn when it comes to sexual harassment were common sense is starting to be used and not political correctness that was used to browbeat the accused when they try to defend their honor. I see a slow change where the men are starting to fight back. In some cases, the accuser was found out to be a gold digger when they are investigated when they tried to use sexual harassment with a previous employer. Now in my workplace, when a female cries sexual harassment or where there is theft. The company I work for now brings in outside investigators who are retired detectives. These people leave no stone left upturned. They do a good job.
So if you are accused of sexual harassment, and you know you are innocent. Don’t say a word. You do not have to prove your innocence. The burden of proof is theirs to prove if there is evidence. Remember silence is golden.