If you follow the Minnesota Vikings in California or even just support the gay-rights community in California and the United States, you might have heard that the Vikings and former player Chris Kluwe have been able to reach a settlement to prevent a lawsuit heading to court. Kluwe had claimed that the team had wrongfully terminated his employment with them because he was outspoken about supporting same-sex marriages.
The deal the Vikings and Kluwe came to is one a bit unusual for lawsuits; they have settled with the Vikings donating an undisclosed amount of money to five gay rights-related charities over the next five years. In fact, Kluwe will get nothing monetary out of the settlement.
Kluwe has claimed that a coach had made anti-gay remarks while he was on the team, and he also reportedly has issues with the way he was forced to leave the team. This deal resolves those issues, and it will hopefully be the start for some people to receive the money they need through the gay-rights groups. One of the team’s owner has said that his focus is to maintain a tolerant culture within the National Football League. Additionally, he hopes to maintain a culture of respect and inclusion to make a positive workplace for players, coaches and staff members.
The settlement also requires that team employees go through sensitivity training four times per year. Additionally, the coordinator who was accused of anti-gay comments has been suspended for three games and has been ordered to go through sensitivity training as well. The team will also be addressing LGBT issues and professional athletics at a national symposium in Minneapolis in 2015.
This is an interesting case that is settled in a way that benefits the very community Kluwe claims was wronged. If you’re in a situation like this one, this may be one way you can right a wrong without having to head to court.
Source: CBS 8, “Kluwe, Vikings reach settlement to avert lawsuit” Amy Forliti, Aug. 19, 2014