Drake University has settled a lawsuit filed by the school’s former head athletic trainer in the wake of his 2016 firing.
Scott Kerr, who had been diagnosed with a medical condition which caused him to urinate more frequently, was reportedly fired for an incident in which the condition forced him to urinate in a dirty training room whirlpool because he couldn’t reach a bathroom in time. Des Moines-based TV station KCCI reports that Kerr, a 31-year veteran at Drake, filed a complaint with the Iowa Civil Rights Commission in November 2016.
The Des Moines Register reports that the school’s women’s tennis coach Mai-Ly Tran walked in on Kerr during the incident in question, and after having the situation explained to her, urged Kerr to report it to then-athletic director Sandy Hatfield Clubb. Kerr did so, and was reportedly told by Hatfield Clubb that he should have urinated in his pants instead. Hatfield Clubb allegedly told Kerr that he was unfit to remain in his position, but would be allowed to train his replacement. The following day, the school’s office of legal council reportedly informed Kerr that he would be terminated immediately.
Prior to the settlement, the university released a statement reading in part:
“As we stated publicly in late November 2016, Mr. Kerr was terminated for his decision to urinate in a training room whirlpool that is utilized by the student-athletes under his care, and for his failure to report that behavior until the female colleague who witnessed his behavior insisted that the matter be reported two days later. Mr. Kerr did not request an accommodation for any medical condition prior to the events in question nor prior to the termination decision being made by Drake University.”
The lawsuit alleged that disability, age and gender played a role in Kerr’s dismissal. In settling the case, neither party admits liability or wrongdoing. The case will not go to court. Terms of the settlement were not disclosed.