Two former employees sue Baldwin City, alleging age and sex discrimination
photo by: Elvyn Jones
Two former employees of Baldwin City have filed lawsuits against the municipal body, both alleging that they faced discrimination on the basis of sex and age and that they were wrongfully terminated.
Tamara Hagerman, 57, a former administrative assistant for the city, and Amanda Croucher, 45, a former meter reader, have both filed lawsuits in the U.S. District Court for the District of Kansas.
Hagerman started at the city in March of 2002, Croucher in October 2002, according to the lawsuits. Both were terminated — wrongfully, their lawsuits claim — on or about Sept. 18, 2018.
Both women had medical issues that entitle them to protections under the Americans With Disabilities Act Amendments Act and the Family and Medical Leave Act, but they both were able to perform their duties with or without reasonable accommodations, the lawsuits say.
They claim the city engaged in a pattern and practice of sex, age and/or disability discrimination. Croucher’s suit also alleges that the city engaged in this discrimination “with respect to a hostile work environment, unfair discipline, disparate hiring, firing and a focus on getting rid of older female employees or those with disabilities or serious health conditions or those who report” discrimination or retaliation.
Hagerman’s lawsuit alleges that she was fired despite her complaints of illegal conduct and discrimination as well as her requests for accommodation, including medical leave. The suit says the city’s conduct against her included “hostile, discriminatory and retaliatory comments and actions, and other adverse actions impacting the terms and conditions” of her employment.
Croucher’s suit claims her sex was a motivating factor for the city to discriminate against her, and its actions included subjecting her to “unfounded discipline, denying her medical leave, and terminating her employment for false, pretextual reasons and replacing Plaintiff with younger, non-disabled, and/or male, less-qualified employees.”
The lawsuits allege that both women have suffered emotional pain and suffering, mental anguish, loss of enjoyment of life and harm to their reputations. Both suits request damages of lost wages and benefits, with interest, attorneys fees and “equitable relief as appropriate, including but not limited to reinstatement.” They have requested jury trials.
Laura Hartman, city clerk for Baldwin City, said neither she nor the city administrator had received anything about the lawsuits as of noon Monday and therefore had no comment.
The attorney representing the two women, Eric Smith of the Kansas City, Mo.-based firm Siro Smith Dickson PC, said via email Monday that it was the firm’s practice not to comment on pending litigation beyond what is contained in the public court filings.
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