A Mount Vernon woman is suing Grant County and its director of community corrections, claiming she was called a “bad lesbian,” among other derogatory terms, by staff members while under consideration for a job in 2013 and was eventually passed over because of her sexual orientation.
Terry Hanson, 54, contends county staff discriminated against her and violated her civil rights. In the suit filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Pendleton, Hanson claims Grant County has a “custom, policy or practice of engaging in sexual orientation discrimination.”
The claims come after another federal suit filed against Grant County in September by James Gravley, a former county parole and probation officer. Gravley claimed to have heard the comments made about Hanson, spoke out about what was said, filed a complaint with the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries and was later fired in retaliation.
In an answer filed in November to Gravley’s federal complaint, Grant County admitted an employee called Hanson one lesbian slur during a staff meeting to discuss job candidates, but it denies anyone called her a “bad lesbian” and other derogatory terms.
Both lawsuits ask for jury trials and an undisclosed amount of financial damages.
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