Hartford Employee Says Administrator Harassed Her Too - NBC Connecticut

Hartford Employee Says Administrator Harassed Her Too

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    Hartford Employee Says Administrator Harassed Her Too
    Hartford Police

    A Hartford public schools employee is breaking her silence.

    She is accusing the administrator --who's been accused of sending sexual text messages with a teenager-- of being inappropriate with her too.

    This woman says she's dealt with uncomfortable communication from Eduardo Genao for years but she was too scared to speak up.

    The woman told the NBC Connecticut Troubleshooters: "He sent me a photo of half his body in pajamas, and later on he asked if i wanted to see."

    She tells NBC Connecticut that the text messages came roughly once a month.

    She says not all of them were inappropriate but they started almost immediately after she was hired in Hartford nearly ten years ago.

    Troubleshooter Jill Konopka asks the woman: "How did you respond?"

    The woman said, "As best (as I) could. Try to keep it professional. Try to bring it back, in a way it doesn't escalate or go places. Try to bring it back work related."

    The NBC Connecticut Troubleshooters recently sat down with this Hartford Public Schools employee who once reported directly to former school administrator Genao. He was forced to resign last week over allegations he was inappropriately texting a 13-year-old girl from New York. He has not been charged. Police are currently investigating.

    The woman told Nbc Connecticut, "When I saw it on the news, the first thing i thought was 'wow, finally he's been caught!' But, i was surprised that it said it did not involve school staff or a student."

    She believes she was sexually harassed both on and off the clock, for years. She showed us some of the texts she saved.

    Woman responded, "If it was a phone call, then it would go to inappropriate things. If it was a text, then it would go to 'what are you doing?' 'What are you wearing?' 'Can I see?' 'Can you send me a pic?' 'Do you wanna see what I'm doing?' 'What I'm wearing? Do you want to see where I am?'"

    She says it all came from his personal, not work, cell phone. And at work, she says Genao asked her into his office on a daily basis.

    The woman added, "He'd ask you to come and sit in the office and work. Who wants to sit with their boss and work right there. And he asked a lot of personal questions, so he knew all about you."

    She admits, she was too scared to speak up. That she didn't want to cause problems for herself, for Genao or his family.

    Woman added, "You feel very uncomfortable. He's in a very big position. And you know you could lose your job at any time with what you say or how you react."

    She now feels the weight of the world has been lifted from her shoulders.

    The woman added, "I am relieved. I won't get messages anymore. I won't have to figure out how to answer them. I am relieved i can move on and do my work like a regular employee. Always, 'oh my gosh, what can i do? You know, if I don't answer correctly or don't do this, maybe I'll lose my job, i just didn't know."

    That employee says she's surprised the district hasn't reached out to employees in the wake of the allegations against Genao. NBC Connecticut has reached out to school officials.

    Officials sent the Troubleshooters this statement, attributable to Pedro Zayas with Hartford Public Schools.

    "No form of harassment will be tolerated in the hartford public schools. We take these allegations very seriously. We strongly urge that person to please come forward and report these allegations through the harassment complaint procedure so that the allegations can be fully reviewed and investigated."

    We spoke with Genao’s attorney again this afternoon, and he reiterates he has no comment on the case. We also reached out to Genao without success.