'racist, biased culture'
Alphonso David, former president of the Human Rights Campaign, sued the LGBTQ advocacy group on Thursday, alleging that his firing in the wake of the ex-New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo sexual harassment scandal was a result of a pattern of racial discrimination, The Washington Post reports.
David was let go in September weeks after it was revealed he "had helped seek signatories for a letter that sought to undermine the accusations of Cuomo's first sexual harassment accuser, Lindsey Boylan," writes the Post. He also allegedly advised Albany aides during the scandal and shared with the governor's office records pertaining to Boylan that he had kept after leaving his job working for Cuomo in 2019.
David maintains that "his interactions with Cuomo's office were proper and did not justify his dismissal," notes the Post.
The Black civil rights attorney in his legal complaint characterized the HRC as having a "racist, biased culture," and claims he was told by board members that he was initially paid less due to his race. He also alleges he was encourged by a board member to "stop mentioning his race in public comments," writes the Post.
"HRC underpaid David, and then terminated him, because he is Black," reads his complaint. HRC had no immediate comment as of Thursday morning.
"I had to challenge a system and a pattern of bias that has not only affected me, but it has affected way too many Black and Brown people," David told the Post, explaining his rationale behind the lawsuit. "Discrimination and bias are rife within HRC. And I'm just the latest person to be affected."