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Friday, April 6, 2018

Complaint: Allina ignored intern’s sexual harassment allegations

Barbara L. Jones
Minnesota Lawyer
Originally published March 7, 2018

Here is an excerpt:

Abel’s complaint stems from the practicum at Abbott, partially under Gottlieb’s supervision.  She began her practicum in September 2015. According to the complaint, she immediately encountered sexualized conversation with Gottlieb and he attempted to control any conversations she and other students had with anybody other than him.

On her first day at the clinic, Gottlieb took students outside and instructed Abel to lie down in the street, ostensibly to measure a parking space. She refused and Gottlieb told her that “obeying” him would be an area for growth. When speaking with other people, he frequently referred to Abel, of Asian-Indian descent, as “the graduate student of color” or “the brown one.”  He also refused to provide her with access to the IT chart system, forcing her to ask him for “favors,” the complaint alleges. Gottlieb repeatedly threatened to fire Abel and other students from the practicum, the complaint said.

Gottlieb spent time in individual supervision sessions with Abel and also group sessions that involved role play. He told students to mimic having sex with him in his role as therapist and tell him he was good in bed, the complaint states. At these times he sometimes had a visible erection, the complaint also says. Abel raised these and other concerns but was brushed off by Abbott personnel, her complaint alleges.  Abel asked Dr. Michael Schmitz, the clinical director of hospital-based psychology services, for help but was told that she had to be “emotionally tough” and put up with Gottlieb, the complaint continues. She sought some assistance from Finch, whose job was to assist Gottlieb in the clinical psychology training program and supervise interns.  Gottlieb was displeased and threatening about her discussions with Schmitz and Finch, the complaint says.

The article is here.