12/01/2006

Ypsilanti to settle lawsuit with former City Clerk

(December 1, 2006) The City of Ypsilanti has agreed (see pg. 87) to settle a civil rights discrimination lawsuit filed by former City Clerk Cherry Lawson. Lawson, formerly from Detroit, is now the City Clerk in Sedona, Arizona.

Lawson filed the suit claiming she had been discriminated against when she was promoted to interim clerk after long-time City Clerk Bob Slone retired in 2004. Including Slone, nine department managers have left the city in the last 30 months.

When a department manager left the City, it had been the practice over the past two years for the City to appoint an employee as interim manager. The interim manager would then receive the same pay as the manager that had quit.

However, the City did not do that when they promoted Lawson from deputy clerk to interim clerk in 2004.

According to the City, on October 3, 2006, City Council met in closed session with the City's labor attorney Dave Kempner to discuss options. While the settlement agreement was not available from the City, the settlement amount is expected to be just under $7,000.

City Council will vote on approving the settlement on Tuesday, December 5, 2006.

6 Comments:

At December 08, 2006 4:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is no lawsuit. There never was a lawsuit. There was a complaint, but never a lawsuit.

 
At December 08, 2006 4:39 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is no lawsuit. There never was a lawsuit. There was a complaint, but never a lawsuit.

 
At December 08, 2006 6:55 PM, Blogger Steve Pierce, Ypsilanti, Michigan USA said...

Hi Brian, thanks for your post.

You are correct, what Lawson filed was a complaint.

However, when the city met with mediators from the Michigan Department of Civil Rights and agreed to a cash settlement of $6,933, the city settled a lawsuit.

Here is what the city posted on their website: "Bruner (representative for the defendant) and Kempner (legal counsel for the defendant) met with Michigan Department of Civil Rights mediators on November 27 and Lawson (the plaintiff) participated via telephone."

The release went on to say: "With the help of the mediators, the parties outlined the terms of the agreement."

First some definitions.

LAWSUIT or SUIT. Any proceeding by a party against another in a court of law.

The meeting between mediators, the city, and Lawson was a proceeding with plaintiff and defendant.

COURT OF LAW. Any judicial tribunal that administers the laws of a state.

Lawson filed a complaint with a the Michigan Department of Civil Rights.

The Michigan Department of Civil Rights administers the laws of the state of Michigan, thus it is a Court of Law.

COMPLAINT. Initial pleading that starts a civil action and states the basis for the court's jurisdiction, the basis for the claim, and the demand for relief.

Lawsons action, in this case the complaint, started the civil action.

Therefore, when the city agreed to a settlement, the city settled a lawsuit.

Thanks for posting your thoughts.

Cheers!

- Steve

 
At December 09, 2006 6:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi again Steve.

Thanks for the opportunity.

Some definitions:

Lawsuit:

Function: noun
: an action brought in a court for the purpose of seeking relief from or remedy for an alleged wrong
Source: Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law. Merriam-Webster, Inc. 09 Dec. 2006. Dictionary.com http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/lawsuit

n. An action or a suit brought before a court, as to recover a right or redress a grievance. Source:The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Houghton Mifflin Company, 2004. 09 Dec. 2006. Dictionary.com http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/lawsuit

a case in a court of law involving a claim, complaint, etc., by one party against another; suit at law. Source: Dictionary.com Unabridged (v 1.0.1). Random House, Inc. 09 Dec. 2006. Dictionary.com http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/lawsuit



Michigan Department of Civil Rights
MDCR is an administrative agency with investigative and enforcement authority. The Enforcement Process is defined as all of the tasks performed when a customer interacts with the department regarding a civil rights related need or concern, including investigation and resolution of complaints of discrimination, outreach and education programs, community relations, and contract compliance.

Source: http://www.michigan.gov/mdcr/0,1607,7-138-42240---,00.html



The Michigan Department of Civil Rights is not a court of law. The city and Ms. Lawson entered into mediation, without going to court.

 
At December 09, 2006 11:02 PM, Blogger Steve Pierce, Ypsilanti, Michigan USA said...

Brian,

You are using the wrong dictionary, you should be using Black's Law Dictionary.

Cheers!

- Steve

 
At October 19, 2008 12:19 AM, Blogger Laura said...

Was Ypsilanti fooled by a professional fraud? Cherry Lawson received $30,500 in 2001 from the Feds for disaster relief for her home...in Detroit. In 2001. Where no disaster hit. Seeing the problem?

http://www.fedspending.org/faads/faads.php?fiscal_year=2001&recip_id=159044&sortby=f&datype=T&reptype=r&database=faads&detail=4&submit=GO

 

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