OK, Lea’s story is starting to percolate into the press. The Oregonian picked it up.
From the article:
In the ruling on Nov. 19, however, the jury did not decide whether Lakeside-Scott’s allegations were true, only that she was terminated in February 2002 for airing her complaints in the state filing. That violated the First Amendment, the jury found.
In the lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court of Oregon in 2002, Lakeside-Scott alleged that co-workers and supervisors used county e-mail and phones to conduct personal and social business; that co-workers sent her sexually explicit messages; and that Jann Brown, who was a manager but not Lakeside-Scott’s immediate supervisor, showed favoritism by hiring and promoting gay and lesbian employees.
Instead of responding to her complaints, she claims that supervisors retaliated against her by dragging their feet on her requests for ergonomic furniture and refusing to reclassify her position or consider her applications for promotion. She claims her firing was at the behest of Brown, who, according to the complaint, “was (at least in part) motivated to have Scott discharged because of the personal nature of Scott’s allegations against her.”
This article adds details that I wasn’t previously aware of, for instance that the jury didn’t rule on whether or not Lea’s allegations were true.
Also of interest is that the total award could actually go higher:
He [Judge Michael Mossman] is expected to rule on a second claim brought by Lakeside-Scott under Oregon’s whistle-blower law, which makes it a civil rights violation if workers who step forward with complaints are retaliated against. At that time, the judge could award a separate amount of money for lost wages and other non-economic damages.
And the official county response to the verdict?
Lawyers for Lakeside-Scott and the county, and county Chairwoman Diane Linn, declined to comment on the case while aspects of it remain undecided. The county has until next week to file post-trial motions.