CLINTON — A District Court judge has ruled in favor of the city in the case of Clinton firefighter who claimed she was unfairly denied "light duty" when she was pregnant.

The summary judgment was filed in Clinton County District Court and written by Judge Henry Latham.

Karen McQuistion became aware she was pregnant on May 9, 2011, and notified her supervisors at the fire department and requested light duty. That request eventually was denied by the city attorney and city administrator.

In late September, McQuistion stopped working on the recommendation of her doctor and returned to work in March 2012 at the same rank and pay.

In March 2012, she brought the lawsuit against the city, claiming discrimination and a violation of the Iowa Constitution.

In the 13-page ruling, Latham ruled on three different claims in favor the city.

In one count the judge ruled that McQuistion’s case was not similar to Clinton Police Officers who had been given light duty when pregnant because the police bargaining unit contract calls for light duty in those situations, and the fire department contract did not.

In another count, McQuistion claimed the city violated equal protection clause of the constitution. The judge wrote that the plaintiff could not identify any other city employees, except the two Clinton Police Officers, treated more favorably. The judge noted the difference in union contracts and denied that claim.

Latham cited city policies for denying McQuistion's due process claim and said they do not discriminate against her rights.

(7) comments


We can bet the union will have the police language next contract. The city's defense guarantees light duty for all injured firefighters now.


Did she get pregnant in the line of duty. LOL


The judge ruled based on the contract that she signed and agreed to when she took employment. "the police bargaining unit contract calls for light duty in those situations, and the fire department contract did not."

Read the contract and thank your union for writing it so that you are excluded. Contracts are legal, and the judged ruled accordingly.


Because women are not given everything they ask for there is a war against them. What a crock.


Talk about a bad practice. For sure an appeal coming.


Just because a practice might be bad doesn't make it illegal. There's a substantive difference between the two.


Not many desk jobs in the fire department.

Note the word " Extreme".

The City of Clinton is seeking qualified applicants for the position of Firefighter in the Clinton Fire Department. Duties include responding to emergency fire, rescue, hazardous materials, medical and airport incidents; responding to ambulance calls; identifying hazardous materials; training; and operational tests on equipment and vehicles. Ability to work in extreme circumstances as well as deal with life and death situations required.

Welcome to the discussion.

Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.