Michigan’s Department of Human Services (DHS) was fined $21,000 after an ape doll was placed on DHS worker Crystal Perry’s cubicle and left there for three weeks. The ape appeared just days after Perry met with her supervisors to discuss why she wasn’t being promoted.
“It truly belittled me. It just made me feel less than a person” Perry told the Lansing State Journal.
The judge who heard the case agreed with Perry.
“(It) is despicable,” said Judge Aquilina, according to court transcripts quoted by the Lansing Journal. “It is not worthy of any state department. It is a continued, hostile work environment. It is upsetting. It is beneath any American.”
The judge fined DHS $1,000 for every day it was left atop Perry’s office cubicle — a total of $21,000 for the three weeks.
Perry, who has a master’s degree in human resources and labor relations from Michigan State University, believes the action was racially motivated.
DHS spokesman David Akerly said the agency plans to appeal Aquilina’s ruling to the Michigan Court of Appeals.