CHICAGO (CNNfn) - Mitsubishi America's chairman accepted a stinging sexual-harassment report about his company Wednesday from former U.S. Labor Secretary Lynn Martin.
The report, commissioned by Mitsubishi after the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) sued the company for alleged harassment, paints a bleak picture of management at the automaker's Normal, Ill., plant.
Mitsubishi hired Martin to conduct the study after the EEOC accused company officials of tolerating sexual harassment against as many as 700 female workers.
In addition, 29 female employees have filed their own lawsuit against the company.
Martin's report recommended major restructuring of employee relations at Mitsubishi's Normal plant.
She blamed problems on separation of management from the plant's workers, which allowed specific problems to go unaddressed.
The former Labor secretary recommended Tsuneo Ohinouye, chairman of Mitsubishi Motor Manufacturing of America, read her report every night.
"There's no magic bullet here," Martin told a news conference. "There's not one thing that if this or any other company does, everything becomes right. This is a series of difficult things to do to change the way you do business."
Mitsubishi initially denied the EEOC's allegations, even busing workers to Chicago to protest the agency's moves.
But a boycott organized by Jesse Jackson's Rainbow Coalition and the National Organization for Women (NOW) got the company's attention.
Now, Mitsubishi says it's trying to settle all of the pending litigation.
"We started talking with other people through lawyers, with sincere attempts to accommodate (plaintiffs)," company chief Ohinouye said. "We started (by offering) any conditions or any places so that (the plaintiffs) could comfortably work."
But the company and the plaintiffs have not yet settled the suits, and supporters of the women who sued doubt Mitsubishi's sincerity.
"The offer that was made is an offer that could possibly punish the very women it purported to help," charged Rosemary Dempsey of NOW. (49K WAV) or (49K AIFF)