Justice Department Settles Lawsuit Alleging Military Discrimination Against the North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts and Senior Resident Court Judge
WASHINGTON – The Justice Department announced today that it has reached a settlement that, if approved by the court, will resolve a lawsuit filed by the Department against the Administrative Office of the Courts of the State of North Carolina and the Honorable Jerry Braswell, Senior Resident Superior Court Judge for North Carolina Judicial District 8-B, in his official capacity.
The complaint, filed by the Department on Nov. 14, 2008, in U.S. District Court in Raleigh, N.C., alleged that the defendants discriminated against former magistrate James L. Myles when they failed to reappoint Myles to an additional term as a magistrate due to his service in the U.S. Army Reserve, in violation of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act in 1994 (USERRA). USERRA prohibits employment discrimination against individuals because of their service or service obligation in the uniformed services. Under the terms of the settlement, the defendants are required to pay Myles a monetary award of $12,000 that includes back pay.
"The Department demonstrates again with this settlement that it will vigorously defend the rights of service members to be free from discrimination based on their military service and obligation," said Acting Assistant Attorney General Loretta King of the Civil Rights Division.
The Justice Department’s lawsuit was filed after receiving Myles’s complaint from the Veterans’ Employment and Training Service of the Department of Labor (DOL), upon completion of its investigation.
The Department’s Civil Rights Division places a high priority on the enforcement of service members’ rights under USERRA. Additional information about USERRA can be found on the Department of Justice Web site at: http://www.servicemembers.gov, and on the DOLWeb site at: http://www.dol.gov/vets/programs/userra/main.htm.