Australian Man Fired For Being Gay & HIV-Positive Wins Big Case


An Australian man recently won a landmark case after he was fired for being gay and HIV-positive, the Local reported on Feb. 4.

Australia's Innsbruck's regional court ordered the State of Tyrol to pay the man, whose identity has not been revealed, �35,000 ($39,239.20 U.S.D.) in damages after his employer, the State of Tyrol, let him go.

Officials from the LGBT rights group RKL represented the man and argued he was unfairly fired. The court found that the State of Tyrol violated the Tyrol's Equal Treatment Act and will pay the man a lump sum and will also pay out a sum equal to what he could have earned and accused in pension benefits had he not been canned, said RKL president and lawyer Helmut Graupner.

The Local reports the man was allegedly stalked by his ex-boyfriend and outed by his employer as HIV-positive and gay. The man said his bosses told him should look for another job and a few days later, his contract with the State of Tyrol was terminated.

His employers argued, however, that his firing had nothing to do with his being gay or his HIV status. They claimed they already decided to nix his contract before discovering the information about his private life.

Graupner said the court's ruling was "a pioneering and just judgement," according to the Local. He added it was the first time an Australian court awarded compensation in a case of discrimination against someone with HIV.

The website notes the court's ruling is not final and it can be appealed.

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