Ranger College settles federal lawsuit filed by professor alleging sexual harassment
RANGER, Texas - Ranger College reached an agreement with a professor who alleged she was discriminated and retaliated against by the school.
Dr. Elizabeth Price and Ranger College reached a resolution last week in the United States Court of the Northern District of Texas in Abilene, according to court documents. They filed a Joint Status Report "regarding settlement negotiations."
Price accused the school in April of sexual discrimination and harassment and retaliation, according to court documents.
"The fear of retaliation is real, and so that is one of the reasons that many people are so reluctant to complain," Price's lawyer Karen Fitzgerald said on Wednesday.
Fitzgerald said women have been visiting her office weekly alleging workplace harassment.
"The most common are inappropriate remarks. Things that might be construed as an advancement," Fitzgerald said.
In Price's case she claimed in court documents an assistant basketball coach made sexual remarks and threatened her. She also alleged Ranger College President Dr. Bill Campion retaliated when he learned she complained to human resources.
Campion wasn't available to KTXS for comment on Wednesday regarding the settlement. KTXS hasn't received a copy of the settlement yet after requesting it.
The junior college did, however, tell KTXS that Dr. Price no longer works for the school. She was a tenured professor and the director of testing.
"The most important step they can take is to try to document the harassment in some form," Fitzgerald said.
She also said it is important victims of harassment or discrimination speak up. A victim only has 180 days to file a charge of discrimination with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. To report it to the Texas Workforce Commission, they have 300 days.
"You really do have a very short window to file a complaint with either the EEOC or the Texas Workforce Commission to preserve your rights," Fitzgerald said.