- A lawsuit claims that former Lululemon worker Shayla Famouri was raped by her boss, Philip Silva, and that when she reported the assault to the company, she was encouraged to resign.
- The lawsuit also claims that Lululemon was aware of other complaints against Silva prior to the rape, and that the company did nothing about them.
- Lululemon says it was not aware of prior complaints and that it immediately suspended Silva upon learning of Famouri’s allegations.
A $3 million lawsuit against Lululemon claims that the company “created the perfect environment for a sexual predator” by ignoring complaints about a supervisor who was sexually harassing his subordinates, BuzzFeed News reports.
The lawsuit was filed on behalf of Shayla Famouri, who worked at a Lululemon store in Santa Monica from 2014 to 2016.
The suit claims that former Lululemon employee Philip Silva repeatedly harassed Famouri, who was his subordinate, and pressured her to spend time alone with him.
It also claims that Silva raped Famouri at his home in April 2016 and that when she reported the rape to Lululemon’s human resources department, she was encouraged to resign.
According to the suit, Lululemon was aware of complaints about Silva’s behavior toward female employees prior to the alleged assault, but it moved him to a new store – Famouri’s store – instead of investigating the claims.
“Lululemon created the perfect environment for a sexual predator like Silva to operate,” the lawsuit reads. “Doing nothing to abate his inappropriate conduct while continuing to promote and foster an environment and situations where it was considered ‘okay’ for 34-year-old Silva to use his position of power to lure young female subordinates into compromising situations.”
Lululemon denies that it ignored complaints about Silva.
“In 2016, Shayla Famouri raised serious allegations regarding the behavior of another employee,” the company said in a statement to BuzzFeed News. “Upon learning of these allegations, the company initiated a comprehensive and in-depth investigation. The accused employee was immediately suspended; and then resigned. Nevertheless, the company saw the investigation through to completion, ultimately finding that the accused employee did engage in behavior that was not in line with our standards of conduct.”
The lawsuit is seeking $3 million in damages.