FDNY Settles Reality TV Star Sexual Harassment Suit for $350k

Fire Law Blog does not usually rely upon Entertainment Tonight or People as news sources, but tonight’s story is a bit different. Reality TV star Angelina Pivarnick has agreed to settle her sexual harassment lawsuit against FDNY and the New York City for a reported $350,000.

Pivarnick, who starred on the TV show Jersey Shore, joined FDNY in 2016 as an EMT. She claims Lieutenants Jonathan Schechter and David Rudnitzky sexually harassed her, and that she was retaliated against after complaining. She filed suit in federal court in 2019 naming the city and Schechter as defendants.

The suit claims Pivarnick was subjected to a sexually hostile work environment, including “unwelcome sexual advances, degrading comments about her body, vulgar sexual comments, inappropriate questions about her private relationships and, in one instance, the groping of an intimate part of her body without her consent.” Our coverage from September 18, 2019 has additional details on the allegations.

According to the court file, the City of New York has been dismissed from the suit as of September 25, 2020. However, the case appears to remain active against Lt. Schechter.

Coverage in People.

Coverage in Entertainment Tonight.

About Curt Varone

Curt Varone has over 40 years of fire service experience and 30 as a practicing attorney licensed in both Rhode Island and Maine. His background includes 29 years as a career firefighter in Providence (retiring as a Deputy Assistant Chief), as well as volunteer and paid on call experience. He is the author of two books: Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, (2006, 2nd ed. 2011, 3rd ed. 2014) and Fire Officer's Legal Handbook (2007), and is a contributing editor for Firehouse Magazine writing the Fire Law column.
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