A Polk County jury has awarded long-time University of Iowa employee Jane Meyer $1.43 million over the loss of her job as the university’s senior associate athletic director, finding in her favor on claims of gender and sexual orientation discrimination and retaliation.
The executive director of the Equal Rights Advocates summed it up saying that the verdict “should make athletic directors think twice before they fire someone, before they decide to pay a woman tens of thousands of dollars less than a man, before they decide to impose a double standard.”
The verdict, which has shined an unfavorable light on the treatment of women in the UI athletic department, comes just before a second case involving another female Division I coach who also alleges that the university discriminates against gay women.
Discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity are prohibited under Iowa law. Federal law falls short in prohibiting discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation specifically, but the recent Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals decision in Hively v. Ivy Tech Community College will likely influence future Title VII cases to include it.
Whether you have been discriminated against in hiring, firing, promotion or have been subject to retaliation when you raised concerns about employment discrimination, there are remedies you can pursue if your employer fails to act.
Victims of discrimination may be able to seek damages for past and future wages, missed benefits and promotion opportunities. Emotional and punitive damages may also be appropriate. Some victims simply want the discrimination to stop and may seek reinstatement to their previous position or get the promotion they deserved.
Contact an Iowa Sexual Orientation Discrimination in the Workplace Attorney
If you have been a victim of employment discrimination, retaliation or sexual harassment on the job, contact Iowa Sexual Orientation Discrimination in the Workplace Attorney Marc Humphrey for immediate help. The law is on your side when employers and other employees engage in discriminatory conduct based on sex, gender identity or sexual orientation (including all forms of sexual harassment), race, ethnicity or national origin, age, religion and other protected classes. We have over 30 years of employment law experience – call our Des Moines Iowa employment discrimination team for assistance today at 515-331-3510.
Source: The Des Moines Register, “One Verdict Rendered, UI Braces for Another Discrimination Trial”, by Mark Emmert, May 6, 2017.