Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Paterson Schools Pay $120K in Bias Suit

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Paterson Schools Pay $120K in Bias Suit

Article excerpt

PATERSON - The city school district has agreed to pay $120,000 to settle a discrimination lawsuit filed by a carpenter who was fired in 2014.

The carpenter, Otilio Colon, claimed that he was mistreated because of his bosses' alleged bias against Hispanics and said he suffered retaliation after he filed an affirmative action complaint.

Under a settlement approved by the Board of Education this week, the district agreed to issue a $40,000 check to Colon and $80,000 to his law firm, Grabell and Associates.

Matthew Grabell declined to comment on the settlement. District officials also did not comment.

Colon said in his lawsuit that he was hired by the district in 2002 and had no problems for almost a decade. But he claimed that trouble started in 2011 after Kevin Hooper was hired as carpentry foreman and Nicholas Papa became his immediate boss. …

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