CU-Denver graduate student claims she was sexually discriminated against at an internship
Jennifer Anne Blair is suing CU-Denver through its Board of Regents and the Kaiser Foundation Health Plan of Colorado (KFHP) for sexual and age discrimination.
Blair, a post-operative transsexual female, alleges unfair and unequal treatment during her time as a student in CU’s clinical psychology masters program.
Blair, 55, enrolled in the masters program at CU-Denver Health Sciences Center (UCDHSC) in the fall of 2004.
She completed her coursework for the program in May 2005 with a 4.0 grade point average.
In the summer of 2005, Blair began a UCDHSC required internship with Kaiser and claims she has been subject to “sex stereotyping, age discrimination and unlawful retaliation for complaining about discrimination.”
Blair described the environment at KFHP as hostile and said the sexual discrimination began shortly after she began her internship.
One incident of inequality cited by Blair occurred after a KFHP client complained to the clinic director that having a transsexual woman working at the clinic made her feel “uncomfortable.”
Following the client’s complaint, Blair’s internship supervisor, Dr. Pamela Daniel, instructed Blair that when she was finished working with a client, she should remain seated rather than to show the client the way out.
Daniel’s justification for isolating Blair in this requirement was Blair’s height was intimidating to patients.
Blair was terminated from her internship in October 2005 after complaining about the discrimination.
Kaiser asserted they were terminating Blair because she had violated KFHP “conflict of interest rules.”
Blair asked UCDHSC to take action to correct the discrimination and illegitimate termination after being asked to leave KFHP.
After a series of complaints, an investigation and an appeal, UCDHSC gave Blair an “F” for her internship in January 2007.
Blair says the investigation was biased because UCDHSC only looked into a report presented by KFHP.
Blair has filed suit against the CU Regents, KFHP, Allison Bashe, Director of the Clinical Psychology Master’s Program and Kaiser employee Pamela Daniel.
The suit rests on violations of Title IX, which includes denial of equal protection under the law and intentional interference with prospective business advantage.
Blair is suing for loss of educational opportunities, tuition, employment opportunities, damages for emotional pain and suffering, compensatory damages and attorney fees.
Contact Campus Press staff writer Elizabeth Cuje at Elizabeth.firstname.lastname@example.org