FEDERAL HEIGHTS, Colo. (CBS4)– A paramedic has filed a discrimination lawsuit against the City of Federal Heights after he says he was fired for being gay.
Cory, who doesn’t want his last name used, said being a paramedic was his dream job since he was a child. Now his dream has become a nightmare.
“Very disappointed and hurt,” said Cory. “This is not the 1950s anymore.”
Cory started working as a paramedic with the Federal Heights Fire Department in 2012. After six months on the job, he told his supervisor he was gay.
He said it was soon after that his fellow firefighters started to harass him with gay slurs and continued to progressively get worse.
“Playing some pornographic movies and asking if I’d ever seen the sexual organs of a female before,” said Cory.
After a worker confronted him and threatened violence, Cory complained to a supervisor.
“I was labeled a rat,” said Cory. “Workers were told, ‘Don’t talk to him, he’ll get you in trouble.”
Cory said the gay slurs continued but he scored high marks on all his tests and tried to avoid contact with his fellow workers.
“Just kept my mouth shut and kept plugging along, thinking it would eventually get better,” said Cory.
Cory said it was then that his supervisor placed him on probation and stepped up his workload. All this while his co-workers allegedly told him to “act like a man” and “put down your purse.”
Cory said last February his supervisor called him into the office and fired him.
“I didn’t think I’d done anything wrong so I asked him to clarify. He just said, ‘You’re not a good fit here,'” said Cory.
Cory said he decided to file a lawsuit but that it’s not about money, it’s about sending a message, “You can’t treat women, minorities and homosexuals this way. It’s a work place, not a boy’s club.”
The City Manager of Federal Heights released this statement: “We have not officially received the lawsuit. We cannot comment because it’s a personnel issue.”
Cory has since gotten a job with a local hospital.