Jury tells WSU Tri-Cities to pay former worker $100,000

RICHLAND — A Benton County Superior Court jury has awarded $100,000 in damages to a former employee of Washington State University Tri-Cities who said she endured a hostile work environment created by a supervisor.

The supervisor referred to students and employees with derisive racial terms.

The Tri-City Herald reported the jury’s decision followed a two-week trial.

Damages were awarded to Anna Mitson, but not two other women who filed the lawsuit in October 2011 with her. Their lawyer, Andrea Clare, says jurors rejected the bulk of the claims because the harassment did not meet specific requirements.

The workers had complained about Jaime Contreras, who was the school’s director of student affairs from 2008-11. He resigned after an investigation confirmed he used derogatory terms.

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Information from: Tri-City Herald, http://www.tri-cityherald.com

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