Labor & Employment

Sexual Harassment of ... Santa?!?

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The next time Santa’s making a list and checking it twice, he might want to focus on an elite group. That is the very small number of adults who show up at a shopping mall for a visit with St. Nick with more than Christmas on their minds, an employment lawyer suggests.

An incident of alleged sexual harassment of Santa was reported in a Connecticut shopping mall over the weekend, resulting in the arrest of a 33-year-old woman who allegedly sat on 65-year-old Santa’s lap and touched him inappropriately, reports the Hartford Courant. (It was not difficult to track the suspect down, the newspaper notes: She was on crutches.)

However, attorney Daniel Schwartz says he doubts the incident raises much of a red flag for employers concerned about possible sexual harassment of Santa. For one thing, the jolly old elf is probably an independent contractor, notes Schwartz on his Connecticut Employment Law Blog. And, for another, “I’m just taking a hunch here, but I’m imagining that this kind of harassment of Santa Claus is pretty rare; thus, it’s unlikely the employer could have foreseen this kind of harassment,” he writes.

Hence, the practical answer to this potential employment problem, according to Schwartz, is traditional: Santa should keep a list of who’s naughty and who’s nice. Sexual harassers, of course, should be in the former category—and should also get coal in their stockings for Christmas.

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