A federal judge sided with a plaintiff who was found to have been wrongfully terminated, rejecting the defendant’s claims that a jury’s back pay award was incorrect because the former employee likely would have been laid off due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In August 2021, a jury returned a verdict in favor of the plaintiff, Keneth Clark, finding that the Association of Classified Employees-American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (ACE-AFSCME) Local 2250, which represents members of Prince George’s County, Maryland, public school employees, terminated him because of his race and subjected him to a hostile working environment, according to the opinion filed May 12 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland.