Former Harvard professor sues for discrimination, retaliation

| Mar 23, 2015 | Uncategorized |

California residents might be interested to learn about a recent lawsuit filed by a former Harvard University professor, alleging the Ivy League school refused to grant her tenure in retaliation for her advocacy and other behavior. According to court documents, the woman claims she was told she should expect tenure, but then it was not granted after she had complained about gender equity.

The female professor, who was an associate professor in the social sciences department, alleges that the college’s actions were in retaliation for her advocating on behalf of students who had experienced sexual harassment or sexual assault. She also had reportedly complained about not being paid as much as male co-workers. The woman alleges that she was told the negative decision regarding tenure was made, and that she was then told it had to do with her political activity. She also alleges that she had taken out a second mortgage on her home from Harvard. When her position was ended, she alleges Harvard demanded payment in full.

Harvard is one of many undergraduate institutions currently under investigation regarding how the school handles sexual assault allegations. Additionally, the school’s law school was found to have violated gender equity laws as recently as December 2014 following an investigation completed by the U.S. Department of Education.

Workplace discrimination against members of a protected class is forbidden by both state and federal laws. Additionally, if a worker has complained about alleged discriminatory behavior, employers are further forbidden from retaliating due to the act of complaining. In the event discrimination and retaliation has occurred, affected workers may want to consult with an employment law attorney. It is important to take action quickly, as there are time limitations that apply to filing a complaint.

Source: The Huffington Post, “Harvard sued for allegedly retaliating against professor who defended sexual assault survivors,” Tyler Kingkade, March 13, 2015.

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