POSTED: 9:05 a.m. HST, Nov 2, 2012
LAST UPDATED: 3:32 p.m. HST, Nov 2, 2012
A lawsuit alleging rampant sexual harassment of nine female employees at Señor Frog's was filed today by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.
The suit also names Altres Inc., a staffing firm contracted by Señor Frog's to provide human resources services and oversee non-management staff at Señor Frog's in Waikiki.
The EEOC alleges that nine female servers and bartenders were repeatedly harassed with sexual propositions, explicit sexual remarks, groping, grabbing, and exposure of genital areas by male managers, and even ordered to perform sexual favors for high-level Señor Frog's officials.
The suit alleges that the behavior was condoned by Señor Frog's owner, and includes Altres as a defendant, alleging that the company also is liable for the hostile work environment at the Waikiki restaurant and bar.
Altres Inc. President and CEO Barron Guss anticipates his company will be dismissed from the lawsuit.
“Altres is a staffing company and human resources company,” though Altres did not staff the employees in (the Señor Frog's) workplace,” he told the Star-Advertiser. The employees were “hired, directed, controlled, compensated and sometimes terminated, all by Señor Frog's. We provided administrative services only,” he said.
Altres’ role with Señor Frog's was “administrative employer services, so we will naturally be named (in such lawsuits). It’s up to the courts to sort it out, and they always do,” Guss said.
The company has not done business with Señor Frog's for about four years, after the restaurant did not renew Altres' contract.
Señor Frog's officials could not be reached for immediate comment.
The restaurant closed in August after its ownership was unable to work out a new lease agreement at Royal Hawaiian Center. The Waikiki store was one of more than a dozen operating in Mexico, the U.S. and the Caribbean.