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Monday, March 28, 2011
Forrest County Sheriff’s Department To Reinstate Gay Corrections Officer After ACLU Lawsuit
The Forrest County Sheriff’s Department will reinstate Andre Cooley as a deputy corrections officer as part of the settlement of a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and the ACLU of Mississippi, in which Cooley alleged that he was fired because he is gay. As part of the settlement agreement reached today, the sheriff’s department will also update its written non-discrimination policy to make explicit that the sheriff’s department does not discriminate on the basis of sexual orientation.
“I am looking forward to returning to a job that I loved in the sheriff’s department,” Cooley said. “I’m very happy that the sheriff’s department has clarified in writing that they do not discriminate based on sexual orientation. Everyone should be judged by their ability to do the job, not by their sexual orientation.”