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The South Florida Water Management District will pay $160,000 for firing an employee who complained of discrimination. The employee had a 31-year record of good reviews with the district until a new supervisor took over.

Within a month, the employee complained that the manager was hurling racist comments at him. Soon thereafter, he received his first negative performance review. He battled with the supervisor for nearly two years before being fired.

The jury turned down the discrimination claim but did find the employee was fired in retaliation for complaining. It awarded $75,000 for economic damages and $85,000 for emotional anguish.

Final note: As is so often the case, employers only make matters worse when they blatantly retaliate against employees who file complaints. 

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