Region News

Missouri to pay $475K in harassment, retaliation case

The Associated Press
Posted: Sep. 12, 2018 7:00 am Updated: Sep. 12, 2018 2:52 pm

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) Missouri has agreed to a $475,000 settlement in a case involving a state worker who alleged harassment and discrimination.

Kimberly Russell filed a lawsuit in 2016 while working as a tax auditor at the Missouri Revenue Department, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported . The lawsuit alleges that her supervisor at the agency's Kansas City field compliance bureau retaliated against Russell after she complained about a coworker's harassment in 2014.

Russell alleges the retaliation included negative job reviews, denial of a promotion and being refused a disabled parking space near the office. Russell was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2012, according to court records.

Russell is still an agency employee and earned $37,000 last year, according to state payroll records.

The settlement is the latest in a series of payments in cases involving the discrimination and harassment of female workers in Missouri state government.

Attorney General Josh Hawley began compiling a monthly list of the state's legal expenses in response to the litany of settlements and judgments. Lawsuits against Missouri cost taxpayers at least $23 million last year, Hawley said. Sixteen of those cases involved employment discrimination, with six cases involving the Missouri Department of Corrections.

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Information from: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, http://www.stltoday.com

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