LINDSAY MARCISZ WAS thrilled to land a job as a ticket-taker at California-based UltraStar Cinemas in 2001. Finally the 16-year-old student thought she would enjoy some economic freedom during her last few years of high school. But Marcisz soon discovered that working at the movie theater wasn’t going to be as carefree as she had expected.
Almost immediately after she started, two of the theater’s male managers began making sexual comments and lewd gestures toward Marcisz and three of her female co-workers, also teenagers. Concerned that if she complained she would lose her job, and her new income, Marcisz initially said nothing—even though she often feared going to work.
“When teens aren’t exposed to the education and training they need, they may not develop key relationships of trust with co-employees, supervisor and management such that they can communicate issues of harassment,” O’Flaherty says.
But according to the experts, education and training is the most effective safeguard against legal liability. And it’s important that companies make time to train their employees whether they are full-time, part-time or temporary.