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Severe or pervasive requirement not met for hostile work environment claim stemming from a single sexist remark overheard by the plaintiff.

April 1, 2018
Rose v. Stone Hill Recreation Corporation, Docket No. A-4974-15T4 (App. Div. Feb. 5, 2018)

The plaintiff worked as a hostess at a restaurant. During the course of her employment, she overheard her manager use an obscene, sexist term in referring to a group of female customers. The comment wasn’t directed at the plaintiff, nor did the customers hear it. The plaintiff was terminated a couple of days later and did not contest the reason for her termination. Nonetheless, she asserted a claim under the NJLAD of a hostile work environment premised upon the single sexist comment that she heard uttered by her supervisor. In affirming the dismissal of the claim, the Appellate Court held that a hostile work environment claim requires a showing of severe or pervasive conduct, and the single comment by the supervisor failed to meet either prong of this test.

 

Case Law Alerts, 2nd Quarter, April 2018

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