Instructor sues university, alleging racial discrimination

EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — An instructor has filed a lawsuit against Northwest Christian University in Eugene, alleging the school wrongly fired him while he was on medical leave because of work-related stress.

The Register-Guard reports Johnny Lake, a black man, says he lost his assistant instructor job in December after facing race-related discrimination at the private, Christian university.

Lake’s lawsuit describes the school as a predominantly white institution with a reputation for being “unwelcoming” to students of color, female students, nonheterosexual students and students with disabilities.

Northwest Christian University Vice President for Finance and Administration Gene De Young calls the suit’s allegations hurtful, unfair and “categorically untrue.”

De Young also says the university never canceled Lake’s employment contract, which calls for Lake to teach through the end of the current school year.

Lake seeks $750,000 in the suit.