Over the weekend, OC Labor Fed chief Julio Perez wrote and quickly deleted a Facebook post but not before screen grabbers snatched a copy of it. The copy we were sent doesn’t have the actual date and time stamp, but there were a little more than a half-dozen “likes” before it came down.
Perez, on paid leave from OCLF pending an independent investigation into possible sexual abuse of interns and other women at the Labor Fed, may have made a mistake that he won’t be able to recover from.
According to this story in OC Weekly, it appears that at least five women have complained about Perez for alleged harassment and TheLiberalOC has been told that investigators have spoken to more than a few of them. The challenge for any investigation in sexual harassment claims is for victims to come forward and, when possible, offer proof. Patterns of comments and behavior that become common from witness interviews is also damning.
Perez’s social media post angered Santa Ana activist Tish Leon who posted the screen grab. She posted this comment on December 2:
Seriously! Julio is not only a predator but a coward!
He is resorting to his tactics as a bully!
He needs to go down!
Again where are the women & men to call him on this?…
Why are you being silent?
If you are being silent because he’s a friend, then you need to re-evaluate your judgement on his friendship. If he does this to his victim, then watch your back!
If you truly are in support of women’s rights, then speak out!
Back up our sisters who are being mistreated!
This makes me sick!!!
A friend of Tish’s commented on the piece and it’s not clear if Perez’s post was meant for her, but she certainly thought it was and wrote this:
I don’t expect you to face me and threaten me in person like you do your “homies”. You are gonna send your Comadres to do that for you, shit they already sent me friend requests I don’t need to clean up my name because those who I care about know what I stand for and they know who I be. Sad to see that you know nothing about me, and that your little attempt at bullying me into silence didn’t work out the way you wanted to. The only reason why I am taking time away from my beautiful children to write this is not because you called me a “……” and I have to prove I am not, no I am calling you out because people need to know the special kind of coward and bully you are. It takes some kind of bottom feeder to attack a woman like me, unlike you I would not be able to look at people in the eye and “hang out” como si nada if I had done someone wrong. Lastly, I will see that there isn’t a single open door for you in public service, because Karma is a bitch and she remembers what you did to others!
That same friend posted this message on another string:
Why is it that the same firm conducting the investigation is the same one representing him? Orange County Labor Federation Why have no measures have been taken to provide victims with as much support as you have provided the perpetrator? Is a class action lawsuit gonna make you do the right thing? Do women have to continue to relive the trauma and harm caused by Julio Perez in order for something to be done? Or are advocates gonna have to rally and demand transparency and clear intentions in order to protect SEIU, CSEA, and all Union, Labor, Government reps and community members from “Julio Hugs”?
TheLiberalOC has no information about which law firm is conducting the investigation or if this firm also represents Perez or OCLF.
It’s been nearly six weeks since allegations first came out and the reaction to many #metoo activists is “what’s taking so long?” There are still concerns the union will somehow sweep this investigation under the rug, that’s why TheLiberalOC encourages victims of any sexual harassment or abuse to come forward and talk to investigators. It’s the only way to resolve this issue in just about any organization.