The Philadelphia Chapter of the National Organization for Women is calling on the city's parking authority to remove its executive director after he was found to have sexually harassed a co-worker for two years.
The Philadelphia Parking Authority board disciplined Vincent J. Fenerty after a $30,000 internal investigation - paid for by Fenerty - found he had sexually harassed the subordinate.
The board barred Fenerty from certain managerial responsibilities but allowed him to remain in his $230,000-a-year position.
"Mr. Fenerty is an embarrassment to the city and should step down effective immediately from his position as Executive Director or, more appropriately, should have been fired," said Natalie Catin, president of the local NOW chapter. "No amount of years of 'exemplary service' makes you exempt from accepting the consequences of sexually harassing employees in the workplace."
Catin said allowing Fenerty to keep his job, "sends a message that certain individuals in positions of power are above reproach for reprehensible behavior and that sexual harassment of women in the workplace is not a grave enough infraction for dismissal."
He likened Fenerty's behavior toward the woman as "a high-school, puppy-love situation." He said the woman did not want Fenerty to lose his job, but asked only that unwanted attention stop.
Others, including the city's commission on women, Mayor Kenney, and Gov. Wolf, sharply questioned the board's decision. Kenney called Fenerty's behavior "unacceptable and repugnant."