An employer that makes the decision to terminate a staff member because of the staff member's personal opinions or expression of thoughts may be guilty of wrongful termination. A person that experiences an unfair job loss could suffer professional and financial damages. An art gallery director formerly employed at a Texas university recently agreed to a settlement for the lawsuit he pursued after experiencing what he believed to be wrongful termination.
The man claims that he was terminated after he made a derogatory political comment and denied a request issued by a politician that he judge an art show at the college at which he was employed. Following the situation with the politician, the former art director claims that he apologized, but was later dismissed from his position. The man made the decision to seek legal action against the school for what he believed was a violation of his constitutional rights.
After the suit was reviewed, the university attempted to appeal, but was denied by the courts. The next step would have been to move to a jury trial, but a settlement was reached instead. The university reached a settlement decision with the former employee after both parties participated in court mediation to bring the federal lawsuit to an end. Court records do not list the settlement amount, but did verify that the suit would be dismissed a short time after payment was made to the man.
A person's political opinions are protected by the U.S. Constitution and expression of those opinions should not put one's professional success at risk. A Texas resident who has suffered wrongful termination has the right to seek legal counsel in an effort to pursue justice. With a professional's help, one may be able to successfully seek restitution and obtain compensation for associated losses.
Source: ktre.com, "Former SFA art gallery director, university reach settlement in federal lawsuit", Gary Bass, Dec. 1, 2014