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Religious Freaks Encounters: A Retail Balls Award For Handling A Pervert

 

FREAKS 2From RHUer

My religious freak was also a pervert, and this happened yesterday.

I work in a musical instrument store. We sell everything from keyboards to guitars, all of the drums from everywhere, and sheet music detailing how to play songs on random instruments. We are the go-to place for our city and if you can't find what you need on the first floor, try the second or third! (Don't worry, we have elevators for getting King Kong's Drum Set safely to the ground floor without risking the stairs, but after that, vehicle transportation is YOUR problem!)

Anyway, in comes Religious Freak Pervert, disgustingly well known in these here parts, and identified by wearing an I <3 Jesus hat. The boss refuses to ban him, because he's technically a customer. ('Technically' because he'll buy something as small and cheap as he can find as justification for being in the store in the first place.) Boss has been complained to several times by other employees. My biggest mistake was greeting him like a normal customer before I spotted the damn hat.

Me: "Hello! Welcome to blah-blah Music Store! What are you looking for today?"

Oh shit! It's RFP! Abort! Abort!

Too late...

RFP immediately begins to preach to me. Even as my body freezes, my brain jumps straight into The Snark Zone to save my sanity.

Jesus is life! Jesus is light! (40 watt, 60 watt or 120 watt?) Jesus will save us all from our sins! Have you been saved yet? (Well I've got some Life Savers in my pocket so...) Give me your hand (fuck no, don't you touch me!) so I can call Jesus to you (calling collect or toll free?) so that he can reveal himself to you. Let Him come inside you (um, ew) and bless you with the holy milk of salvation! (Is that what they're calling it these days? Pffft!)

My professional smile is frozen on my face and after several unsuccessful attempts, I finally turn his attention to the fact that he's in a music store and there are things to purchase. That's whent he switch is flipped and he goes full pervert.

RFP: "So what instrument do you play? I bet you play the flute, right?"

Me: "Well no, actually, I play the bassoon."

RFP: *leers* "Oh, so like, a bigger instrument than a flute, huh? You like big things?"

Me: "..."

RFP: "Yeah, a bigger, longer, thicker version of the flute. Little girl like you can handle big things?"

Balls award4Fuck this. I don't need this job that badly.

Me: (I give him a scathingly disgusted look.) "Sir, this topic is NOT acceptable or appropriate. Leave the store now, or I'm calling the cops."

RFP: "Hey! Hey! I'm a customer! Look, I'll buy this!" He grabs for some random thing off a spinning display.

Me: "No. I'm refusing you service. Put it down and get out."

RFP pulls out his wallet, "Look! I have money, see? Cash!"

I'm walking away from him. I grab the phone off the hook, "OUT! OH YOU TEE! OUT!"

The boss comes out of the back office, sees and hears me yelling at the "customer" and starts running towards me, trying to sweet talk and smooth things over.

Nope! I talk over the boss at full volume.

Me: "I WILL NOT BE SEXUALLY HARASSED IN MY WORKPLACE!"

RFP runs out the door as I reach over and start to dial.

I make sure he's gone then put the phone down.

Me to boss: "Ban him, because if I see him in here again, I'm calling the police with or without your permission."

Boss just stared at me for a long time, then quietly walked into the back again.

I looked up corporate's number and put in a call that said my manager was allowing customer to sexually harass us. I live in faint hope that they'll handle this properly.

--RHUer

 

Comments

BH

Jesus would not tolerate someone sexually harassing another person! You did the right thing and if your boss is too stupid to realize that, I feel sorry for him!

LittleBirdy

Good for you! Sucks that you had to take matters into your own hands thanks to your boss, but it's awesome that you stood up for yourself so well.

Tech Support Survivor

Ewwwwww!!!!! Hope corporate brought the ban hammer down and majorly laid into that manager.

Misty Meanor

I hope that boss gets what's coming to him! As for the pervert, he's got a special place in hell!

Herpetarium

Crazy mofo, hope it ends handled as it deserves and manager gets some shit for it from corporate D:

plus.google.com/108073606865059711666

Good for you. There would be a lot less of that crap if more people would refuse to tolerate it.

Couple of pieces of advice:

First, who did you talk to at corporate? Was it HR? If it wasn't, it should have been. Regional managers and other corporate types are far more likely to ignore problems like this in hopes they'll go away, where HR knows exactly how much legal trouble everyone can get in if they don't.

Second, if you don't get a timely response (that you are willing to accept - in this case, I wouldn't settle for anything less than outright banning from the store for the perv, and reeducation for the manager, though you won't get much in the way of details on the latter) from a phone conversation, put it in writing, and send it (or hand deliver it, if you can) to HR, in the form of a complaint. Use the magic words "hostile work environment." They may fire you for it (which is *extremely* illegal), but as you say, you don't need the job that much. (Be up front with unemployment about why - use the word "retribution.")

Third, the company is liable for a hostile work environment. *So is the manager, personally*. If he allows that kind of crap, you can sue him for everything he will ever own. (You likely shouldn't, since he won't own enough to even pay your legal fees, but once he understands that, it'll scare the hell out of him.)

TenebrisVenator

I agree with everything Google has said. HR, Written complaint, and email complaint with a delivery receipt, so you have a paper trail, just in case. Sexual harassment, whether from employees or customers is something they are REQUIRED to protect you from, at least in American employment laws. If they do try to fire you, you can dispute it with both unemployment and the Labor board. Retribution is illegal.
Also, I would love to hear an update as to what, if anything, was done about this

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