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Maine Governor LePage Strong-Arming Rights Commission on Behalf of Moody’s Diner

The Maine Human Rights Commission ruled last year that Moody’s Diner, of Waldoboro, Maine had discriminated against an employee on religious grounds, retaliated against that employee for pursuing the matter legally, and altered the conditions of her employment as a result. As the parties were in the process of trying to settle the matter out of court, Maine Governor LePage stepped in. He wants the Commission to reconsider the case, and is withholding revenues due the commission in order to coerce the commission into acceding to his wishes. The Commission will discuss the possibility of reopening the case on Monday.

2 Comments

  1. Rebecca Webber

    March 24, 2015 at 8:50 am

    Moving Forward from Moody’s
    It is time we stopped spending political capital on one business out of all the many in Maine and instead invested our attention and energy in improving the social capital of all businesses in Maine. The threat by the Executive branch to investigate the Maine Human Rights Commission based on the complaint of one business, which claims its investigation was unfair because the investigator didn’t have an audiotape that it chose not to provide to her, wastes resources that should be used instead to assist all businesses in Maine. The Governor has taken a number of steps that truly help our businesses here but picking favorites is unfair to all the other businesses that are playing by the rules and that cannot conduct their business efficiently when the rules apply to many but not all. It would be more helpful if efforts instead were made to provide additional resources to businesses to understand the laws. The Department of Labor is a great example of what is possible – they have done numerous free programs for everyone, they have participated in Chamber seminars, and they have made all their contact information wide open and their staff available. The Commission has done the same but lacks the resources to fund a full time compliance person. Rather than act on behalf of one business, instead fund for all businesses an advisor who can assist in making sense of the jumble of state and federal laws on discrimination; provide the resources for the Commission to do outreach instead of withholding funds on behalf of one company; use the talents of the Governor’s lawyer to aid all Maine businesses with compliance rather than aid just one in avoiding it. Building capital requires positive and pro-active attention to the business needs of all.

    • Bruce Bilmes and Susan Boyle

      March 24, 2015 at 11:56 am

      Rebecca, why do you think the governor is spending political capital on the Moody’s case? What’s in it for him? Does he think this actually builds political capital by defending a Christian-run business?

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