West Virginia Record

Sunday, March 29, 2020

West Virginia House of Delegates employee alleges she was demoted for reporting sexual harassment, discrimination

State Court

By Marian Johns | Feb 10, 2020

Discrimination 19

CHARLESTON – A West Virginia House of Delegates employee alleges she was demoted for filing a sexual harassment and racial discrimination claim.

Kelly Blunden filed a complaint in Kanawha Circuit Court against the West Virginia House of Delegates and Justin Warden alleging violation of the West Virginia Human Rights Act. 

Blunden, a West Virginia House of Delegates employee, alleges that in November of 2017 Warden, a co-worker, placed a "wooden object" on her desk "that was sexual in nature." She also claims that on July 3, 2018, the House Clerk told her a photo she had on the wall in her office "reminded him of slavery." 

The plaintiff filed a complaint in October 2018 over allegations of sexual and racial harassment in the workplace with the states Equal Employment Opportunity Office. On Dec. 14, 2018, following an investigation on her discrimination claim, she alleges she was demoted in retaliation.

Blunden seeks monetary relief, a trial by jury, interest and all other just relief. She is represented by Dwight Staples and Gail Henderson-Staples of Henderson, Henderson & Staples LC in Huntington. 

The case has been assigned to Circuit Judge Carrie Webster.

Kanawha Circuit Court case number 19-C-1169

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Kanawha Circuit Court