October 31, 2011

Court Dismisses Lawsuit Filed by Ombuds Against The City College

The federal trial court in New York has dismissed a lawsuit filed by Diane Sank against The City College of New York. Sank claimed that the College retaliated against her after she, in her capacity as Ombudsperson, opposed the removal of a former of an academic appointee.

Sank was first elected as the College's Ombuds in 2003 and served through 2010. In 2005, Sank investigated the removal of Director of the Asian Studies Program and concluded it was improper. Over the next two years, the City College reduced the number of rooms where Sank had been permitted to store materials temporarily. Sank has stated that the college's action was wrongfully motivated by of her age, gender and disability, and in retaliation for her opinion in 2005. The court found that the claims were procedurally barred and lacked sufficient evidence of wrongdoing and thus dismissed the lawsuit. Sank was representing herself. (The case cite is Sank v. City Univ. of N.Y., 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 125016, 2-3 (S.D.N.Y. Oct. 27, 2011).)

Note: The case did not address the role or duties of an Ombuds.

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