It’s Nothing Personal–But Should It Be: Finding Agent Liability for Violations of the Federal Employment Discrimination Statutes


Coramae Gary began working at the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (hereinafter “WMATA”) in 1983. In 1987, Gary was promoted to the position of stock clerk. Shortly thereafter, according to the pleading in her case, her second-level supervisor, James Long, allegedly began the following several-years-long pattern of sexual harassment. Initially, Long attempted to procure sexual favors from Gary by promising employment advantages. After determining the futility of that method, Long progressed to threatening Gary with adverse employment consequences, including termination of her employment, if she failed to comply with his demands. In addition, he indicated that he would have her fired if she told anybody of his sexual advances. Gary unremittingly rejected her supervisor’s demands.

Once verbal attempts proved unsuccessful, Long proceeded to use the pretext of inspecting a company construction site to lure the plaintiff to a secluded location and rape her, after which he threatened reprisals against Gary if she informed anyone.

Gary later reported Long’s sexual harassment to a WMATA counselor and filed both a formal grievance with the company and a charge of sexual harassment with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (hereinafter “EEOC”).

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