The decision had been awaited for several weeks. She finally fell on Monday. Senator LR for French nationals living abroad, Joëlle Garriaud-Maylam, was sentenced by the Paris Labor Court for moral harassment against one of her parliamentary collaborators, on sick leave since August 2019. This is the first time that such a decision has been made concerning an elected member of the Senate. “I am moved and happy but I am thinking of all the people who do not dare to speak, who are silent. I hope it will help them.”says Eric (1), the parliamentary collaborator who took the case to court, to Release. Joëlle Garriaud-Maylam must pay him 3,500 euros in damages.
In August, he described in our columns “a heavy atmosphere”, a “hot and cold system” and a “permanent climate of tension” at work. Eric worked for five months with Joëlle Garriaud-Maylam. Very quickly, his sleep deteriorated and asthma attacks appeared. The collaborator had therefore seized the anti-harassment cell of the Senate, before turning to justice.
A letter to Gérard Larcher
His lawyer, Carole Biot-Stuart, is relieved. “Finally a decision that recognizes the harassment. It was not easy”she says, hoping that this premiere will encourage new collaborators to talk. “I had discussions with some of them, they report identical facts. These are people who have suffered and who are still traumatized.she insists.
From this Tuesday, the lawyer intends to send a letter to Gérard Larcher, president of the Upper House. “I want him to tell me how he intends to integrate the industrial tribunal’s decision. The Senate office may decide to lower the senator’s indemnity or reduce her parliamentary appropriation., says Carole Biot-Stuart. Before recalling that a procedure is underway against Larcher. She explains : “He was supposed to denounce the facts of harassment. I hope that the decision of the prud’hommes will speed things up.
For her part, the senator denies the facts of which she is accused and announces to Release want to appeal. “I am surprised that the industrial tribunal allowed itself to be influenced in this way”comments Joëlle Garriaud-Maylam, who “waits to receive the judgment to better understand what motivated this stunning decision”. There was, according to her, “a cleverly orchestrated cabal, slander and relentlessness”. The chosen one affirms that she has no “never harassed anyone” of his life and justifies the “two or three remarks” that she was able to send to her collaborator by “a job badly done or not done”.
She insists on one point: the “differential” between the 250,000 euros in damages requested by Eric and the 3,500 euros that will ultimately be paid to him. “This proves that the prud’hommes understood who they were dealing with”, she says. If she calls, it’s “for principle”.
For several years, the elected official has been under fire from critics at the Luxembourg Palace for her working methods, judged “brutal”. A former assistant tells Freed his experience of a few months with the senator. “His reputation precedes him. Before arriving, I had been told not to go, to refuse the position, but I wanted an experience in the Senate.. He’s talking about “pressure” relies on assistants and “stress” permanent. “She has a way of managing files on a whim”says the one who is still a parliamentary collaborator today, for another elected official.
(1) The first name has been changed