Staffer Sues Family Research Council For Sexual Harassment

sexual harassment 1A high-level official with the Family Research Council has filed a lawsuit accusing the anti-gay activist group of firing her after she complained she was sexual harassed by her boss.

Moira Gaul, FRC’s former Director of Women’s and Reproductive Health, claims her supervisor at the FRC’s Center for Human Life and Bioethics, made inappropriate comments starting in 2007.  (Though the alleged perpetrator is not named in news reports, William Saunders was the director of of FRC’s bioethics department until 2009, when he took a position at Americans United for Life)

“Examples of his behavior include, but are not limited to pressuring me to attend parties, referring to me as a ‘young, attractive woman,’ and emailing me ‘hi cutie,’” Gaul stated in a complaint to the D.C. Office of Human Rights. “He also referred to the use of birth-control pills by young women as ‘whoring around.’ His attitude toward me and other women was rude, belittling, and at times angry,”

After Gaul filed a gender-discrimination complaint to OHR in 2009, she claims FRC began retaliating against her—canceling her health insurance and issuing reprimands for turning time sheets in late.

The Washington Blade reports:

The lawsuit says stress created by her interaction with her supervisor aggravated her pre-existing chronic health problems, which FRC knew about at the time it hired her in 2005. The lawsuit says that prior to her filing the OHR complaint, FRC accommodated her special health needs, allowing her to take time off from work to seek medical treatment.

A flare up of one of her health problems required that she take a short-term disability leave from January 2009 to March 2009, according to the lawsuit.

Although FRC officials initially told her that her health insurance coverage would continue during her disability leave, she was informed in March 2009 that “FRC was retroactively cancelling her health insurance for the period she was on short-term disability leave,” the lawsuit says.

Gaul was eventually dismissed in October 2009 in what FRC classified as a layoff caused by a reduction in federal funding of abstinence-only programs. The organization denies any wrongdoing but, the lawsuit maintains, “three months after Ms. Gaul’s termination, the FRC created a new position with duties similar to the ones previously held by Ms. Gaul,… fully funded by the FRC budget.”

If this was any other workplace we’d be right there with Gaul demanding justice. But we can’t help thinking working for an anti-choice, anti-gay and apparently anti-healthcare group just came back to bite her on the ass.

If Gaul was lying down with dogs, she should’ve expected to get fleas. And, knowing the FRC, they wouldn’t pay for a flea bath.

Source: via the Washington Blade