Main | Wednesday, October 02, 2013

University Official Sues School Over Suspension For Signing Anti-Gay Petition

Last year Washington DC's Gallaudet University suspended its chief diversity officer Angela McCaskill after it was learned that she had signed a Maryland petition against same-sex marriage. McCaskill instantly became the martyr-du-jour of anti-gay groups even though many on the left also denounced her suspension. The school reinstated her three months later, but yesterday she filed a lawsuit.
Her lawsuit accuses Gallaudet of violating anti-discrimination provisions of the D.C. Human Rights Act and of intentionally causing her emotional distress. Gallaudet, a private university in Northeast Washington that receives federal support, is nationally known as a center of scholarship for the deaf and hard of hearing. University spokeswoman Catherine Murphy said Monday that Gallaudet had no comment on the lawsuit. McCaskill, who has worked for Gallaudet for more than 20 years, was placed on paid leave after officials learned that she signed the petition. That led to debate over whether Gallaudet had violated McCaskill’s free speech rights and whether signing the petition was an appropriate action for a university’s diversity officer. Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley (D), a supporter of the gay marriage law, was among those who said the university overreacted.
McCaskill has refused to say if she opposes or supports same-sex marriage, only that she wanted the voters to decide in Maryland. Which they did one month after her suspension.

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