A lawyer for one of the women accusing Republican Presidential hopeful Herman Cain is speaking out and alleges there were several incidents of sexual harassment in a complaint filed more than a decade ago. The lawyer also says the woman is keeping her identity secret so that she doesn't have to relive the events of 1999 in public.
FOX News Radio's Steve Taylor has more from Washington DC:
Read the statement from Lawyer Joel P. Bennett below:
STATEMENT FOR IMMEDIATE DISTRIBUTION
In 1999 I was retained by a female employee of the National Restaurant Association concerning several instances of sexual harassment by the then CEO.
She made the complaint in good faith about a series of inappropriate behaviors and unwanted advances from the CEO.
Those complaints were resolved in an agreement with her acceptance of a monetary settlement. She and her husband see no value in revisiting this matter now, nor in discussing the matter any further, publicly or privately. In fact it would be extremely painful to do so.
She is grateful that she was able to return to her government career, where she is extremely happy serving the American people to the very best of her ability. She looks forward to continuing to work hard for them as we face the significant challenges that lie ahead.
She wishes to thank the media for the restraint that they have shown, her family -- especially her sisters - for their love and support, her colleagues and supervisors for their patience and forbearance and her advisors for their wise council, and most of all, her dear husband of 26 years for standing by her and putting up with all of this.
Everyone is entitled to be treated with dignity and respect in the workplace. Sexual harassment is unfortunately very much alive and with us even today, and women must fight it in all kinds of workplaces at all levels.
My client stands by the complaint she made.
Read the statement from the National Restaurant Association below:
Statement from National Restaurant Association
President and CEO Dawn Sweeney
"We have seen the statement Joel Bennett released earlier today on behalf of his client, a former employee of the Association. The Association consented to the release of that statement, at the request of Mr. Bennett's client.
"Based upon the information currently available, we can confirm that more than a decade ago, in July 1999, Mr. Bennett's client filed a formal internal complaint, in accordance with the Association's existing policies prohibiting discrimination and harassment. Mr. Herman Cain disputed the allegations in the complaint. The Association and Mr. Bennett's client subsequently entered into an agreement to resolve the matter, without any admission of liability. Mr. Cain was not a party to that agreement. The agreement contains mutual confidentiality obligations. Notwithstanding the Association's ongoing policy of maintaining the privacy of all personnel matters, we have advised Mr. Bennett that we are willing to waive the confidentiality of this matter and permit Mr. Bennett's client to comment. As indicated in Mr. Bennett's statement, his client prefers not to be further involved with this matter and we will respect her decision.
"The Association has robust policies designed to ensure that employees with concerns may bring them forward for prompt investigation and resolution, without risk of retaliation. The Association is fully committed to equal employment opportunity and to an environment that is free from any discrimination or harassment."
Founded in 1919, the National Restaurant Association is the leading business association for the restaurant industry, which comprises 945,000 restaurant and foodservice outlets and a work force of nearly 13 million employees. Together with the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation, the Association works to lead America's restaurant industry into a new era of prosperity, prominence, and participation, enhancing the quality of life for all we serve. For more information, visit our Web site at www.restaurant.org.
Read the statement from Herman Cain's campaign reacting to the National Restaurant Association's statement below:
"We look forward to focusing our attention on the real issues impacting this country -- like fixing this broken economy and putting Americans back to work through our 9-9-9 Plan, as well as strengthening national security."