Waitresses on sexual harassment they say they face at work from customers, managers

One waitress said she doesn't just have to please customers, but there are also managers who control which waitresses get the best section in the room.
9:33 | 04/21/18

Coming up in the next {{countdown}} {{countdownlbl}}

Coming up next:



Skip to this video now

Now Playing:


Related Extras
Related Videos
Video Transcript
Transcript for Waitresses on sexual harassment they say they face at work from customers, managers
Reporter: Seven months ago, someery brave women came forward T their personal STO that women everywhere couldpeak up with hope. THA a N D is on the horizon! So ou queson whatillt take to make sure thioment mas for all wor women L across the count the hoekeepers, waitresses, workers in smallnsll big cities. So many of them afr O losing eir jobs. We heard from every part of the country. I was dreading going into rk. Felt under my dress I Dant to LE this job -- Reporter: Oe front les the servers. He would follo the restaurant. Reporter: There a2.5 million waitresses andters across this country Toni an a majority of them work F a wageess than $3.26 an hour. For 12 hours of work, THAs a yc of $40. Are their livelihood. Aom north Cina sends us age. She is a veteran server o0 yes. Six different restaurants. Since she'still ing,he ks us not to give her name. Sayshe's proud of being a waitress, even though the years Ta their toll. Fee aree, my toe hurts. 20 40, 60 -- Reporter: She says every penny she makes goes S supplies for her childre and medical care and college fund. And she knows how we've all laughedhrough the yearsut wh itresses do to earn their tips. Wait,wait, wait -- Go out and get those tips! Oh, wow! You think she thinks I have beautiful face or is S jussaying Well, they do work O . Reporter: We know it's almost kind of handbook. Wear red lipstick. Over. But it's one thing to laugh. Another toit. I'llsay,hi, welcome, what can I do for you wt can I get for you? They'llay, show mur tits. Would you walk into ice that to somebody? Orter: Becau nee the money, you try T smile through comments say came every weekver 20 years.ad one guy say, I could watch you walkay a night. Your wife and children a tting right xt to Yo it's a job that doesn't take edion to do. It takes skill but it doesn't take education. So I think peopleceive us as 're dumb. We'lle it because wn't anything else. Reporter:s smiling at customers who P you. It's also try makeur you please tmana because the managerontrols which servers get the best sectnn the room. The ones we all want. Near thewindows. More customers, more tips. D by the way, across this country,uge percentage of ch and managers are male. I was told that I would not get a section if I did N give my manager a . In the rurant buness, if you don't have a good section, you don't make money. A lot of women that wnthis business are yougle moms. They don't have any self-em. Managers -- they can spot that.e hey walk in the door. And the jt prey on em "You're almost legal." "Are you ready for this in". "You're being dramatic." "Take you from behind." "T toile." Repte2 million people in America, restaurants first B, teaching us our value in the workplace. I was a tanner back then.. Reporter: Madison was only 16 years old when shetarted working at an ihranchise in illiis. What kind of ear-old were you? Private school, all girls. Reporter: She was a hostess at the reer, smiling at stomers. While she sayshis is WHA two the managers, two men, were doing. They would come up behind me, they would R up against me. They're so confident, know. That no one was ever going to say anything. Reporter: She says one of them asked hero run a personal errand W him before shift started. The tnage girl got in the car. What happened? He parks thear. D ust -- unbuckled his belt. And unzi H and he -- he just -- put his S, a it was already erect. It was already --Ike he was -- I don't know. It was just -- R E gra the of my head and pushed my head down. And I -- he justept pushing my head up and wn. And he said, "Well, is worth it if you're not enjoying it so then I got out of the car and ent in to work. Reporteafterwards S says, the franchise ownnd those two managers warned the young gir she should nothing. Not only to protect her, but to protect tamilies. She continued to work the for one more year. I F so nve for even going in the car to begin with. And I think I blamed myself for a long Tim Reporter: As we talked, I thought ild hear a UND fr the next room. Will you com? It W her mother, sobbing. Y'rstronger ti Reporter: Madison says only she lefthat restaurandid she learn there were ten other women who hadeen workingght there in the same franchise had theirtories too. They are now filing suit Ast the franchise and theihop corporation. The franchiseer has denie wrongdoing but gave us no comment. The op corporaon would not comment O litigaon. But they told us they are very concd about any question of harassment worlace and hold their Franchi to high standards. If no one doesthbout it, they're going to keep Gett ithit. Reporter: In a bitterly dedolitical climate,here is one thing we appear finally agree on. 83% ofple think sexual harassment at work is a real problem. Includinmen. Whave respect. For everybody. Reporter: The men Bo's diner in missouriry maybe a lot of men are getting fired too fast. They sdom ou but you sh also be proven before you get fired. Reporter: One diner says justorried that the risk of lauind harassmt claims willually undermine jobs for N in small businesses. Hes say have a job T road with onof my other employees ward the lady, I might be out $50,00 $100,0 in paying. And with the high demand I'm not. Do thatav make the lady be ove qualified the job she gets? Reporter: Another sobering su71% of us think the movement willotake it better for women in the workplace. So who is go Chang the world? For all T restaurant workers just tryingon a livg wi dignity? We received? Id some big, some small. A couple bartenders in new Orleans startedhing called sht change.asking that everyervene for servers. You're notalone. Customers are the people who have thepower. So I think its with just treating the people serving you with respect. Guys say real crazy stuff. Oh, you're a guy,'re bartender, locker roomlk, it's like, no,bs not. Reporter: We also talk to advocate, the head of the largesganizationor restaurant worker rights who says, remember what a T T C Meanor a life. When you'r earning $2, $3, $4, wage so is low it goes en you're living off tips. The customer is always right because the customer pays your lls, N employer. Reporter: At a restaurant in new Yo I talk withservers. Simone says every dollar S Reives goes to support her child, pay for housing, make a dent in her studentloan. So you're living entirely on tips? Right. Reporter: Aerft B in New York, that veteran serverin north Carolina is heading to her job. She sayshe alws a minute or two to think about theyors and their hopes. I just have that littleal with myself that it's going be shift. I'm going to go , I'm going to have a positive attitude. Reporr: Women all O the country hop change will come, and come their workplaces too.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

{"duration":"9:33","description":"One waitress said she doesn't just have to please customers, but there are also managers who control which waitresses get the best section in the room.","mediaType":"default","section":"ABCNews/Nightline","id":"54629263","title":"Waitresses on sexual harassment they say they face at work from customers, managers","url":"/Nightline/video/waitresses-sexual-harassment-face-work-customers-managers-54629263"}