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Lawsuit claims Mayo Clinic worker fired for reporting rape

Mayo Clinic denies the allegations.

A former Mayo Clinic worker is suing the institution over what she alleges was a retaliatory firing.

The suit, filed Wednesday in Olmsted County, says the plaintiff, who worked as a housekeeper at the Rochester hospital, was raped by an assistant supervisor on the job in October 2020. 

The lawsuit says the worker reported the crime to both police and her manager, while her alleged attacker was placed on administrative leave as a Human Resources investigation got underway.

The plaintiff was also placed on leave the following month; in a subsequent meeting with the HR department, two HR representatives "were extremely aggressive and rude as they grilled (the victim) for over two hours and repeatedly accused her of lying about being raped," the suit says.

That December, Mayo's HR representative told the Rochester Police Department that the allegations "were made in bad faith... based upon multiple interviews and contradicting information.”

On December 20, the plaintiff was informed she "was being terminated effective immediately for, among other reasons, 'failure to be forthcoming during an investigation, including by providing false statements or omission of facts.'”

Despite this, the lawsuit states, her "statements throughout the investigation into her report of rape were at all times truthful."

She's seeking "all available compensatory damages including loss of past and future income, emotional distress, loss of reputation and related damages."

Mayo responds

In a statement to BringMeTheNews, a Mayo Clinic spokesperson said the organization denies the allegations "and will defend itself vigorously in court."

Mayo "promptly" investigates reports of misconduct and holds the accused accountable if the report is found to have merit, the spokesperson says, but "in this instance, the evidence did not support" the claims made in the lawsuit.

The plaintiff's termination "was in no way retaliatory," Mayo says, adding that the clinic "does not, under any circumstances, tolerate retaliation."

She was fired "in accordance with Mayo Clinic’s workplace policies and the law, and following a thorough internal investigation."

BringMeTheNews has reached out to the Rochester Police Department regarding the case. 

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