iPhone maker slapped with sexual harassment case on Will Smith thriller ‘Emancipation' film set | Tech News

iPhone maker slapped with sexual harassment case on Will Smith thriller ‘Emancipation' film set

iPhone maker was sued by a woman who claims the company failed to protect her from sexual harassment while she was employed in a Covid support role on the set of the Will Smith thriller “Emancipation.”

By:BLOOMBERG
| Updated on: Aug 22 2022, 10:55 IST
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Apple Inc. was sued by a woman who claims the company failed to protect her from sexual harassment while she was employed in a Covid support role on the set of the Will Smith thriller “Emancipation.” (REUTERS)

iPhone maker was sued by a woman who claims the company failed to protect her from sexual harassment while she was employed in a Covid support role on the set of the Will Smith thriller “Emancipation.”

Alicia Kelly also sued production companies Lionsgate Entertainment Inc. and Jerry Bruckheimer Inc., as well as her direct employers, claiming the companies fostered a workplace environment where sexual harassment, sexual intimidation and sexual battery were allowed against female workers.

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Kelly said in the lawsuit that she was hired in October 2020 as a testing coordinator on the production of the “Hightown” television series in North Carolina. She claims she was harassed by her boss on the set, and when he was transferred his successor also harassed her, including by touching her breasts and buttocks.

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After production wrapped on “Hightown” in March 2021, Kelly said she went to work in New Orleans, where “Emancipation” was going into production, after Apple moved the project from Georgia. Prior to the move, her boss sexually assaulted her in a hotel, Kelly claimed.

Her supervisor from “Hightown” retained his job on “Emancipation” and continued to sexually harass her, according to the complaint.

Apple and Lionsgate “had a duty to exercise reasonable care in the supervision of its subsidiaries, contractors, sub-contractors, and their employees” and failed to carry it out, Kelly claimed.

Lionsgate declined to comment on the lawsuit, but said in a statement that as a matter of corporate policy, it has zero tolerance for sexual harassment on its productions, takes all claims seriously and investigates them thoroughly. Apple didn't immediately respond to a request for comment. Bruckheimer's company also didn't immediately respond.

In addition to failing to protect her against harassment, she also sued Montrose Environmental Group Inc. for gender discrimination, saying she was consistently paid less than her male counterparts. and the Center for Toxicology & Environmental Health for wrongful dismissal.

Montrose and CTEH didn't immediately respond to a request for comment.

Kelly said she complained to human resources at Montrose about the harassment, but the company took no action against her supervisors -- and instead demoted her and eventually fired her.

The case is Kelly v. Center for Toxicology & Environmental Health LLC, 2:22-cv-00683, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Louisiana (New Orleans).

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First Published Date: 17 Mar, 23:38 IST
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