In Friday afternoon media availability, lawyer for Cain accuser says the Georgian made “a series of inappropriate behaviors and unwanted advances” towards his client.
Bennett: “Cain knows the specific incidents… if he chooses not to remember or not acknowledge those that’s his issue.”
Adds accuser “has chosen to not relive the details” but leaves the decision to publish her name to the media.
National Restaurant Association confirms allegations:
“We have advised Mr. Bennett that we are willing to waive the confidentiality of this matter and permit Mr. Bennett’s client to comment.”
In 1999 I was retained by a female employee of the National Restaurant Association concerning several instances of sexual harassment by the then CEO.
She made a complaint in good faith about a series of inappropriate behaviors and unwanted advances from the CEO.
Those complaints were resolved in an agreement with her acceptance of a monetary settlement. She and her husband see no value in revisiting this matter now, nor in discussing this matter further, publicly or privately. In fact it would be extremely painful to do so.
She is grateful that she was able to return to her government career, where she is extremely happy serving the American people to the best of her ability. She looks forward to continuing to work hard for them as we face the significant challenges that lie ahead.
She wishes to thank the media for the restraint that they have shown, her family – especially her sisters – for their love and support, her colleagues and supervisors for their patience and forbearance and her advisors for their wise counsel, and most of all, her dear husband of 26 years for standing by her and putting up with all of this.
Everyone is entitled to be treated with dignity and respect in the workplace. Sexual harassment is unfortunately very much alive and with us even today, and women must fight it in all kinds of workplaces and at all levels.
My client stands by the complaint she made.
National Restaurant President and CEO Dawn Sweeney:
“We have seen the statement Joel Bennett released earlier today on behalf of his client, a former employee of the Association. The Association consented to the release of that statement, at the request of Mr. Bennett’s client.
“Based upon the information currently available, we can confirm that more than a decade ago, in July 1999, Mr. Bennett’s client filed a formal internal complaint, in accordance with the Association’s existing policies prohibiting discrimination and harassment. Mr. Herman Cain disputed the allegations in the complaint. The Association and Mr. Bennett’s client subsequently entered into an agreement to resolve the matter, without any admission of liability. Mr. Cain was not a party to that agreement. The agreement contains mutual confidentiality obligations. Notwithstanding the Association’s ongoing policy of maintaining the privacy of all personnel matters, we have advised Mr. Bennett that we are willing to waive the confidentiality of this matter and permit Mr. Bennett’s client to comment. As indicated in Mr. Bennett’s statement, his client prefers not to be further involved with this matter and we will respect her decision.
“The Association has robust policies designed to ensure that employees with concerns may bring them forward for prompt investigation and resolution, without risk of retaliation. The Association is fully committed to equal employment opportunity and to an environment that is free from any discrimination or harassment.”