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feminist wire | daily newsbriefs

September-10-98

Student Awarded $220,000 for Anti-Gay Harassment

Alma McGowan was awarded $220,000 in a harassment suit against the Spencer County, Kentucky school system.

McGowan alleges that she was harassed and taunted by students over a period of four years, and that the school district did not nothing to punish her harassers or discourage the harassment, most of which was anti-gay.

McGowan was regularly subject to lesbian-baiting and called "lezzie" at a school assembly. She was taunted because of her German nationality, and threatened with rape. McGowan was eventually forced to leave school for home instruction after one student allegedly threatened to burn down her family's house.

A federal jury ruled in favor of McGowan after agreeing that the Spencer County school system had shown "deliberate indifference" to McGowan's complaints.

Media Resources: PlanetOut - September 9, 1998


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