Professor Gordon Klein has filed a lawsuit against his employer UCLA.
Klein was suspended for refusing to reduce the difficulty of final exams for black students.
This suspension came in the wake of the killing of George Floyd by a then-Minneapolis police officer.
Now UCLA faces a major defamation lawsuit, according to the Washington Times.
The lawsuit also includes compensation for financial damages Klein experienced due to how he was treated by the university’s administration for refusing to comply to their demands.
Klein has been employed at UCLA’s Anderson School of Management as a professor for more than 40 years, but in a California state court this week, he named the University of California Board of Regents’ dean, Antonio Bernardo, along with a group of “co-conspirators” that he did not name in the defamation lawsuit.
Professor Klein said to the Washington Times; “I did this because the school has continued to retaliate against me, and other scholars are facing retaliation, and I thought it was important for someone to step up and say, ‘enough.’”
“I have the legal skills and training to do so, so I’m stepping up.” Klein added.
The lawsuit accuses Antonio Bernardo of spearheading an attempt to sabotage Klein’s job after he refused to oblige a “non-black” student’s demand that black students be offered a “no harm” version of the final exam.
The student reportedly made the request because they believed that the death of George Floyd created too much emotional stress for black students to meet the normal expectations of the class.
Antonio Bernardo responded to the Washington Times through a spokesperson, but did not offer any information or defend himself.
An effort titled “Letter Writing for Finals Accommodations for Black Students” circulated on the UCLA campus in the wake of George Floyd’s death.
The crusade sought to persuade professors to alter final exams for black students, making them easier to pass in response to the stress caused from the death caused by law enforcement in Minneapolis.