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Federal Court Grants Complete Dismissal of Plaintiff’s First Amendment Retaliation Claims

Published: September 30, 2010

On September 30 2010, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan ordered the complete dismissal of a lawsuit filed against Flint Township and its supervisor, finding that neither defendant was liable for retaliation in violation of the First Amendment. The Township and its supervisor were defended by McGraw Morris P.C. attorneys Thomas J. McGraw and Stacy J. Belisle. Plaintiff was employed as the former Township supervisor’s confidential secretary and deputy supervisor. She asserted that she engaged in activity protected by the First Amendment when she publically supported the Township’s prior supervisor in an election. When that supervisor lost the election, the incoming elected supervisor laid Plaintiff off. It was within the supervisor’s authority to do this because a confidential secretary serves at the pleasure of the Township supervisor. The court determined that Plaintiff did not have a constitutionally protected interest in maintaining her position with the Township and that the supervisor’s action did not establish an unconstitutional policy or procedure of the Township.


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