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OIG: female national park employees faced inappropriate comments, treatment

[JURIST] The Office of Inspector General [official website] on Wednesday released an investigative report [text, PDF] with findings on allegations of gender discrimination and sexual harassment at Yellowstone National Park [government website]. The investigation began in September 2016 after an employee alleged that a pervasive culture of gender bias against women, sexual harassment, and financial misconduct existed in Yellowstone's maintenance division from 2011 to 2015. The report found credible evidence that male supervisors created a work environment that included unwelcome and inappropriate comments and actions towards women, which was allowed to continue because of the actions (and inactions) of the supervisors. The report also found that a supervisor had allowed his employees to use his government credit card in violation of the US Department of the Interior's Integrated Charge Card Policy [text, PDF]. The report concluded by noting that they found no evidence of hiring discrimination by the group.

The struggle for equal treatment in the workplace has been an issue in the United States for a long time and still continues today. On April 7th, the U.S. Department of Labor accused [JURIST report] Google of engaging in compensation discrimination against female employees. Additionally, In January, the Department of Labor filed a lawsuit against Oracle America, Inc. alleging [JURIST report] that the company engaged in a systemic practice of paying their Caucasian male workers more than other employees. Furthermore, in March of 2016 five members of the US women's soccer team filed an equal pay complaint against the US Soccer Federation with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. Steps have been taken to remedy some of the equal treatment issues, specifically among women. In January, the Mayor of Philadelphia passed a law [JURIST report] barring employers from asking applicants about their past salaries. This law was designed to decreased the wage gap between men and women. New York City and the state legislatures of New Jersey and Pennsylvania are also considering similar measures. In October of 2015, the California Governor signed [JURIST report] the Fair Pay Act [official text] aimed at closing the wage gap between male and female employees.

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