In our prior post, we shared the story of a collegiate employee who, as a deaf African-American woman understands what it is like to be a part of a minority group. Her unique position in life and her hard work earned her the position of chief diversity officer at Gallaudet University, her Alma mater. This has all been placed at risk after the woman decided to honor the right to vote that this country was founded on.

The woman signed the petition in quiet, but has now decided to speak up after being placed on administrative leave for signing a petition that put a same-sex marriage law on the ballot. “No one had the right to determine what my signature meant,” she said as she explained that putting the issue up for vote was not an indication of her belief on the subject of same-sex marriage but on her belief that the decision should be left to the voters and not someone else.

She claims that not only was she placed on administrative leave, but that the university officials “tarnished [her] reputation and 24 years of service” and even “attempted to intimidate” her. She explained that “signing that petition is a right that I have as a citizen of the state.” Instead, the university is calling her anti-gay and claiming that her beliefs would “interfere with her ability to perform her job.”

She isn’t the only one that honors the sacred right to vote. Those on both sides of the same-sex marriage referendum have also spoke up, asking for her immediate reinstatement. It is about free speech, the supports that have rallied around her have said. One student said that “business and personal decisions need to be kept separate” and her belief over the right to vote should not be used as another tool of discrimination.

Source: CNN, “Diversity chief: my reputation is tarnished,” Moni Basu, Oct. 17, 2012

If you fear the loss of your job over a belief system, our law firm represents employees in Missouri and Kansas who are facing an adverse employment action based on their religion, race or other protected class.