EDWARDSVILLE - Sexual harassment allegations will always be thoroughly investigated, retailer Walmart has said following the filing of a complaint linked to a store in Madison County.
A former worker at the company's Glen Carbon store is claiming she was harassed and that supervisors did not react in the proper manner leading to a charge of unlawful employment practices and discrimination under the Illinois Human Rights Act.
Skiler Arban filed suit in Madison County Circuit Court Nov. 5 against the company and an individual she accuses of intentionally inflicting emotional as well as common law assault and battery.
The claims center on a period that followed Arban's promotion to deli department manager to just prior to resigning from her job in April 2018.
In a statement, Walmart spokesperson, Randy Hargrove, told the Record: "We do not tolerate discrimination or harassment of any kind and are committed to thoroughly investigating all sexual harassment allegations.
"We take this matter seriously and will respond appropriately with the Court once we are served.”
According to the complaint, Arban began working closely with the individual defendant following her promotion and claims he started making "sexually offensive jokes, comments, and advances" soon after.
The plaintiff states she told him the remarks were "inappropriate, offensive" and that they made her uncomfortable. She reported to her supervisor that the alleged remarks were made, according to the complaint.
Arban further claims the defendant repeatedly asked her out to lunch and allegedly said to her that he would not be able to keep his hands off if they were both in his vehicle. Again, she claims these remarks were reported.
The situation escalated on March 2, 2018, when he allegedly offensively touched her on the body and genital area. This was reported, Arban claims, adding that she was informed others complained of inappropriate behavior.
Later that month, the plaintiff states she was "confronted" in the store by the defendant's wife with questions about the complaints. Arban resigned April 5.
The plaintiff accuses Walmart of unlawful employment practices, alleging the company acted with intentional, malice, or reckless indifference by purportedly ignoring the allegations. She claims sexual discrimination under the human rights act.
Over the course of most of her final month, the plaintiff, to back up her claim of assault and battery, claims she was in "imminent peril" from the individual defendant.
Arban, who is seeking more than $50,000 in damages, is represented by Ryan J. Mahoney of Cates Mahoney of Swansea.
Madison County Circuit Court case number 2019-L-1577..