Federal judges have rejected Alabama State University’s appeal of a $1 million court judgment for sexual harassment.
The Montgomery Advertiser reported that the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against the school in a 23-page decision on Tuesday.
Three former employees won more than $1 million total in a lawsuit that claimed two top administrators made numerous inappropriate comments and created a hostile work environment.
Alabama State President Emeritus William Harris said the university disagrees with the ruling.
“We continue to deny the discrimination as alleged by the plaintiffs in this case,” Harris said. “While we don’t agree with the court’s finding, I want the public to be assured we have taken and continue to take seriously any allegation of discrimination. We will address appropriately any allegation of discrimination lodged against any person at this University.”
Harris said the university would not tolerate any form of discrimination.
The suit accused former chief operating officer John Knight of repeated sexual advances. It claimed associate executive director LaVonette Bartley used racial slurs.
The judges wrote that the case should concern every Alabama taxpayer. They say they’re left to wonder who is in charge at the school.