Sexual Abuse: Suit Accuses Westchester Country Club of Failing to Address Sexual Harassment and Assault

In early March 2023, the former squash director of an exclusive Westchester country club filed suit alleging that the club failed to address known sexual harassment and assault. Here is more on the sexual abuse allegations at Westchester Country Club (WCC).

 

Westchester Country Club Allegations

 

In 2018, Natalie Grainger, an award-winning professional squash player, was hired as the Director of Squash for the Westchester County Club (WCC).

Soon after starting in her new position, Grainger alleges that she became aware of a disturbing culture within the WCC that allowed male club members to sexually harass female employees. According to her complaint, in 2020, Grainger was called by the sister of a female employee who was “in a panic” because the employee claimed she had been drugged while she was out with a “prominent” club member. Grainger later heard that the club member raped the employee.

Grainger also alleged that in 2021, she became especially concerned about sexual harassment at WCC when she discovered text messages among male club members discussing a “lineup” of women they had allegedly picked out for the evening’s “fun.” The text exchange, which was sent to a female employee by a club member, allegedly included inappropriate images of women. Grainger claims that she protested to a WCC Board Member about the communication. However, according to her suit, the board failed to act.

Grainger claims that she repeatedly complained to WCC board members and leadership about these and other incidents during her employment and that WCC leadership was unresponsive. Finally, in 2022, she submitted a formal complaint to WCC’s Board Chairman. According to Grainger, WCC executives responded to her complaint just days later by asking her to resign, claiming they had “lost faith” in her. When Grainger refused to resign, WCC terminated her employment.

 

Sexual Abuse and Harassment in the Workplace

 

The claims alleged in the WCC lawsuit paint an alarming picture of a work environment that failed to address rampant sexual abuse and harassment of female employees. Employers have a responsibility to provide a safe work environment for employees. This obligation includes addressing known sexual abuse and harassment in the workplace. Further, there may also be grounds to hold employers who fail to conduct background checks, offer sexual harassment and abuse prevention training, or address safety issues liable.

 

New York Adult Survivors Act

 

In 2022, New York’s Adult Survivors Act (ASA) became law opening a one-year lookback period for sexual abuse survivors to file previously time-barred claims against their abusers. The ASA window is for survivors of sexual abuse and assault who were over 18 at the time of the offense and will close in November of 2023. The ASA also allows survivors to file claims against entities, including employers and companies, that enabled the abuse.

When abuse occurs in the workplace or the abuser is a co-worker, survivors may face harassment and wrongful termination in addition to the trauma of their experience. If you have been sexually assaulted, harassed, or abused, you have a right to hold the abuser and the responsible institutions accountable for your harm. Contact an experienced sexual abuse personal injury attorney today to schedule a consultation. Your sexual abuse personal injury attorney can help you gather the evidence you need to establish your claim and get the damages you need and deserve.

 

Contact an Experienced Sexual Abuse Injury Attorney

When an employer is aware of sexual abuse or harassment within its organization and fails to act, it should be held accountable. If you’ve been the victim of rape, sexual abuse, or other sexual violence in the workplace, you want an experienced and compassionate sexual abuse injury attorney on your side. Bonina & Bonina, P.C. understand the importance of helping sexual abuse survivors get the help they need for their trauma. Contact us online or call us at 1-888-MEDLAW1 to schedule your free consultation. Home and hospital visits are available. Se Habla Español.