A former groomer at Vanderpump Dogs, the dog rescue facility owned by Lisa Vanderpump, has filed a lawsuit against The Vanderpump Dogs Foundation — a move Lisa’s business partner is calling “unnecessary.”
On Thursday, Dr. John Sessa told TooFab that the claims of sexual harassment and wrongful termination being made by Damiana Guzman, a former employee of the Foundation, were more or less unwarranted.
“It’s a shame that someone who worked for the Foundation for less than 90 days would choose to sue or try to malign an organization whose sole purpose is dedicated to being a voice for the voiceless,” he said. “Working to resolve unnecessary cases like this just takes away from being able to save more lives.”
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Our Executive Director, @dr.johnsessa is in China checking on our sanctuary and rescue center! We are making tremendous progress and we can’t wait to share it with all of you! Now that we have your attention, please take a minute to click the link in our bio, and sign our petition we co-wrote with Alcee Hastings, calling attention to the horrendous Yulin Dog Meat Festival. It’s important we make our voices be heard and put pressure on the Mayor of Yulin, Mr. Wei Tao. Together we can make a difference and put a stop once and for all to these horrendous festivals, not only in China, but worldwide. #StopYulinForever #VanderpumpDogs
In court documents filed by Damiana January 24 and obtained by Page Six, Damiana alleges that she was employed at Vanderpump Dogs as a groomer for two months and resigned in July 2019 “because of the intolerable working conditions created by her manager” and his superiors.
Damiana alleges that her manager “mocked [her] by calling her things such as a ‘skinny no-ass fool,’ and a ‘flat-ass bitch.’” She said he also told her he didn’t know how her girlfriend could stand being with her “because she had no ass” and that “he could turn her straight.”
Damiana states in the documents that “not a day went by” that the manager didn’t comment on “[her] body, her sexual preference, or his sexual prowess.” Despite her complaints to higher-ups, she does not believe any disciplinary action was ever taken, therefore she felt her only choice was to resign.
According to the lawsuit, Damiana is seeking damages.
“We intend to continue to stand behind our client throughout the legal process,” her legal team told Page Six.
This makes the second lawsuit to hit Lisa and/or one of her businesses in just as many months, as a former employee filed a class-action lawsuit against Lisa and Ken Todd last month for allegedly failing to pay minimum and overtime wages, failing to provide meal breaks (or compensation in lieu of breaks) and for violating California’s unfair compensation law at their restaurants.
An initial court date for the case has been set for March 13.
(Photos: Instagram; Bravo)