Because our law firm represents clients in the Chicago metro area as well as in Milwaukee, we keep a close watch on developments in employment law in Illinois as well as in Wisconsin. We read recently of a former county employee in Illinois who filed a federal lawsuit in which she states that she complained about a board member’s sexual harassment – and was then fired.

Kristen Poshard was promoted to administrator of the Community Development Department in Madison County back in March of 2017. She alleges in her lawsuit that board member Philip Chapman began making sexual comments to her about two months later, despite her “clear communication that his sexually harassing attention was unwelcome.”

Chapman declined to comment on the litigation.

Poshard says she complained about the sexual harassment to her immediate supervisor, but those complaints were ignored, so she complained then to the county board’s chair. She says the chair invited to be part of a golf outing with Chapman and to accept the harassment “for the team.”

In June of that year, Poshard was put on paid administrative leave and in October 2017, her employment was terminated. The board chairman said Poshard was fired after she refused to return to work from administrative leave.

In a press release, the chair also stated that he asked Chapman to resign, but that Chapman refused.

There is simply no place in any workplace, whether in government or business, for unlawful sexual harassment or retaliation for reporting harassment. If you are dealing with this type of inappropriate workplace behavior, contact an attorney experienced in employment law litigation.