Court upholds firing of recruiter who touched female applicant

The nation’s highest labor court appears to be holding public officials to a higher standard at least as far as sexual harassment.

The court, the Sala II, upheld the dismissal without employer responsibilities of a man who headed the recruitment section of the Patronato National de la Infancia, the child welfare organization.

The case stems from 2003 and has been under appeal most of that time in the lower labor courts.

The man who has the last name of Quirós was a 20-year employee when he was let go. Had he won his appeal, he sought back pay reinstatement and other benefits. The firing centers on his caressing the face of an employment applicant, according to the decision released by the Poder Judicial.

The decision also seem to be a big step in the courts recognizing sexual harassment.

The magistrates based much of the decision on the fact that the man was a public employee.

Because of his job, the man was required to comply with the obligations set forth in Costa Rican law.

The allegation was contract to the physical integrity and the dignity of the women who was seeking the job. In addition, the man was in a position of power when compared to the job applicant, said the magistrates.

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