Alva Review-Courier -

Former Emporia State employee wins back pay for retaliation


August 28, 2020

EMPORIA, Kan. (AP) — A former Emporia State University employee was awarded $64,303 Thursday after she complained the school retaliated against her by not renewing her contract when she complained about racial discrimination.

Angelica Hale and her husband, Melvin Hale, who are Black, filed separate lawsuits in 2016, alleging they were not rehired because they raised concerns about discrimination when an assistant found a note with a racial slur in their department.

Melvin Hale was an associate professor at School of Library and Information Management and Angelica Hale was a temporary employee in the department.

U.S. District Judge Danial Crabtree ruled in favor of Angelica Hale in July 2019 but awarded her only $1 because he did not have sufficient evidence to determine an appropriate amount. Further motions were filed and on Thursday, Crabtree awarded Angelica Hale $48,312 in back pay and $15,991 in interest.

Crabtree did not award front pay, and Angelica Hale said she planned to file a motion Friday seeking increased compensation.

Emporia State said in a statement it is studying the judgment and exploring its options. The statement said the school is committed to "creating a welcoming environment for all students, faculty and staff."

,A jury dismissed Melvin Hale's $10 million lawsuit against five school administrators in July 2019.


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