Since 2007, defunct Madera dried fruit producer Z Foods and its parent company Zoria Farms, Inc. subjected female workers to a pattern of sexual abuse and fired those who reported the harassment, a class-action federal lawsuit alleged earlier this week.
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) filed the suit Wednesday in District Court on behalf of at least 10 workers employed by Z Foods and Zoria Farms in 2007 and 2008.
For years until the Madera plant was closed in 2011, the lawsuit claims, supervisors “routinely solicited sex from female subordinates as a condition of employment or in exchange for more favorable jobs.”
One supervisor named in the lawsuit, Martin Ramirez, allegedly approached several female employees including Rosa Mendez with “unwanted touching” such as hugging her from behind, grabbing her buttocks, and telling her she would be offered a better job if she had sex with him...