San Diego Appeals Firefighter’s ‘Forced Gay Pride’ Jury Award

“The city is appealing a jury’s decision to award $34,300 to four firefighters who sued the city for sexual harassment after they were ordered to ride a fire engine in the 2007 gay pride parade. The City Council voted 7-0 in a closed session Monday to appeal. Councilman Tony Young was absent. The vote wasn’t made public until yesterday. A Superior Court jury deliberated for 2½ days last month and found that some parade participants and spectators sexually harassed the firefighters. The $34,300 was to be shared among the firefighters: John Ghiotto, Jason Hewitt, Alex Kane and Chad Allison. They said they were subjected to catcalls and saw barely clothed men simulate sex acts. They said the experience left them with headaches, anxiety, and other stress-related symptoms.” [SD U-T]

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  • dellisonly

    Finally, something about this case makes sense. Kudos to the San Diego city council

  • Stephen

    $34,300 for “headaches, anxiety, and other stress-related symptoms” from riding in a gay pride parade? That’s excessive. I don’t think they should be awarded anything, even if they did in fact experience these symptoms, which I doubt they did. I’m sure they got some lawyer to tell them they could get some money out of this by claiming they were “traumatized” by seeing scantily-clad men. Get over it. I’m glad the city is appealing the decision.

  • larkin

    i guess it must just be horrible for these men in the firehouse changing rooms….

  • ajax

    @Stephen: Perhaps the reward is for a lingering sense of sexual inadequacy :-)

  • Jaroslaw

    #2 Stephen – can’t agree more with a post than yours. This is ridiculous. I would accept they felt “uncomfortable” possibly, but headaches & anxiety? I guess running into a burning building that may collapse at any time is stress free? Give me a double break!

  • rogue dandelion

    @larkin: i just keep thinking of tobias the never nude from arrested development

  • kevin (not that one)

    The Supreme Court ruling was flawed.

    It should’ve been decided after they had to lipsync for their lives.

  • Dave

    I live in San Diego, these guys are viewed as a bunch of pansies. Ah the irony.


    If there are any EMS or Firefighting folks out there looking for support, please stop by our website:

    The mission of the National EMS and Firefighters Pride Alliance (NEFPA) shall be to support, defend, and protect the interests and the general well being of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Emergency Medical Service and Firefighting professionals and volunteers, including but not limited to: Firefighters of all ranks, Emergency Medical Technicians, Paramedics, Critical Care Transport Crews, Air Ambulance Crews, Dispatchers, Cadets and Explorers, who are aspiring, active or retired members of recognized Emergency Medical Service and Firefighting agencies.

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