jueves, 15 de marzo de 2018

Sanofi in #MeToo fight

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Sanofi finds itself in the middle of a very public legal battle with a former executive dismissed over sexual harassment claims even as the #MeToo movement builds momentum in the country.

The Paris-based drugmaker is fighting claims from its former director of press relations, Jean-Marc Podvin, who claims he was unfairly dismissed after being accused of sexting to one employee and putting the hand of another on his exposed penis, Bloomberg reports

Podvin, who denies the allegations, is seeking €1.2 million ($1.5 million) from his former employer after being let go in 2013 for gross misconduct. Podvin's lawyer, whose claims have twice been denied by French courts, said he is appealing a previously unreported October appeals court ruling.

Sanofi in an emailed statement today said: "Sanofi does not comment on a court decision. However, as part of its HR policy and its Code of Ethics, Sanofi is particularly attentive to the respect and protection of all its employees and has always taken all the necessary provisions to prevent, stop and punish acts of sexual harassment.

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 The French pharmaceutical company suspended Podvin two working days after its personnel department was warned by the assistant, according to the dismissal letter, cited in the ruling. About two weeks later he was fired. In the meantime, other accusers came forward.

Executive Fired for Sexting Seeks $1.5 Million


 
In the Sanofi case, Podvin is accused of sending texts to an assistant in which he called her “sexy” and commented on her very pretty “top and bottom,” according to court documents cited by Bloomberg. Another said that “sexting” was hot. She complained to the personnel department, and he was let go two weeks later.

After his dismissal, Bloomberg reported that other women at Sanofi came forward, including a press officer that claimed Podvin gave her a ride home but stopped before getting to her apartment “and put my hand on his penis, which was already outside his trousers.” She said she tried to defuse the situation with humor because she was afraid and never reported the incident to the police or at work. Podvin's lawyer told Bloomberg it is her word against his that the incident happened, and as far as the claims of sexting, his client has a different interpretation of the events.(Más)
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