When Reporting Sexual Harassment, Assault Goes Wrong

Veteran Shares Story Of Sexual Harassment

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - There has been no shortage of sexual harassment and assault claims being shared on the internet and TVs across the nation. However, as those stories come out for Joyce Neal they strike a tone of pain. 

“I was ticked because they remained silent and their careers flourished,” said Neal. 

Neal worked for the state the majority of her life but that's not where she planned to spend her career. She joined the Army on active duty in the late 80s. That's also where she says her supervisor continuously asked her for sexual favors. After months of enduring it, she decided to file a former complaint.  

“Literally, when I put it in writing the whole world, everybody turned against me,” explained Neal. “My career was over when that paperwork went forward and it didn’t help that his wife worked in our higher headquarters.”

By 1991 she was discharged from the Army. “I’m still angry, and I don’t know if I’ll ever get over what I went through,” said Neal. 

“You may be socially penalized by coworkers if you out a liked employee,” sexual harassment attorney, Stephen Crofford said. 

Crofford sees these types of cases all the time and says the amount of stories coming out now concerns him. “I don’t want there to be an over saturation where the public gets overwhelmed with these types of cases from the past,” said Crofford. 

However, he said any victim of sexual harassment or assault should notify their employer immediately. Its advice Neal agrees with. 

“Had I remained silent, maybe I could’ve retired a command sergeant major,” said Neal “If I had to do it all over again I would still speak up.”

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