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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Did Ammons look the other way?



Ammons FAMU President James Ammons got an unflattering mention in a story this weekend in the Raleigh News & Observer. The North Carolina newspaper reported Saturday that the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently found that a female police officer at North Carolina Central University, where Ammons was chancellor before he got the top job at FAMU, was "a victim of retaliation and a sexually hostile work environment" – a finding that opens the door for a lawsuit.

The story  says the woman, who worked at the police department in 2005, complained to her superiors that a male co-worker was touching her inappropriately and making "comments of a sexual nature." It also says she kept complaining up the university chain of command, going as high as Ammons, but that top officials "kept sending her back to the police department to try to work out her problems."

She eventually quit. Her lawyer says her complaints were part of a "systemic problem" at NCCU. "It's a difficult issue for an institution with a reputation and commitment to civil rights to allow this kind of pattern to tarnish their reputation," said Durham attorney Scott Holmes. "It's hypocritical."

- Ron Matus, state education reporter

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 9:25am]


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