Press "Enter" to skip to content

Felicia Sonmez Sues Washington Post and Martin Baron, Claiming Discrimination

Felicia Sonmez, a Washington Post reporter, filed a discrimination lawsuit towards the newspaper and a few of its prime editors on Wednesday, claiming that they had discriminated towards her by barring her from masking tales associated to sexual assault after she went public as a sufferer of assault.

Ms. Sonmez, who has coated breaking political information at The Post since 2018, stated within the lawsuit that she had been subjected to a hostile work surroundings after her editors put in place two bans over practically two years that prevented her from excelling at her job.

The lawsuit was filed in Superior Court of the District of Columbia. Among the defendants is The Post’s former govt editor Martin Baron, who retired in February. The go well with additionally names as defendants 5 present high-level editors: Cameron Barr, Tracy Grant, Steve Ginsberg, Lori Montgomery and Peter Wallsten.

Ms. Sonmez stated within the lawsuit that after she publicly said in 2018 that she had been assaulted by a fellow journalist whereas residing in Beijing, The Post had barred her from masking Christine Blasey Ford’s sexual misconduct allegations towards the Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh. (The accused journalist, who labored for The Los Angeles Times on the time, has denied the allegations.)

After an article in Reason journal on allegations towards the journalist got here out a year later, Ms. Sonmez stated, The Post once more subjected her to a protection ban. She added that her editors had “disciplined” her for publicly requesting a correction to the article.

In January 2020, The Post suspended Ms. Sonmez after she tweeted a hyperlink to a information article detailing sexual assault allegations towards the basketball star Kobe Bryant shortly after his loss of life. She alleges within the lawsuit that The Post didn’t present safety for her after she was inundated afterward with rape and loss of life threats. That suspension was later overturned.

The second protection ban towards Ms. Sonmez was lifted after she publicly pleaded together with her editors to take action, in keeping with the lawsuit.

The lawsuit stated that, due to the protection bans, Ms. Sonmez “was denied the opportunity to cover many stories that were newsworthy and received widespread attention that would have led to further exposure and career advancement.” She additionally suffered “economic loss, humiliation, embarrassment, mental and emotional distress, and the deprivation of her rights to equal employment opportunities,” in keeping with the go well with.

A spokeswoman for The Post declined to remark. Mr. Baron didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.

Ms. Sonmez has demanded a jury trial. She is asking for $2 million in damages, or an quantity “to be determined by the jury.”