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Cyclist Who Flipped Off Trump Sues Former Employer
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Summary: The biker who flipped off Trump in a viral picture is suing the employer who fired her for violating their social media policy. 

Last year, a photo of bicyclist Juli Briskman went viral. In the picture, she could be seen giving President Donald Trump’s motorcade the middle finger during a bike ride in Virginia, and the Monday after the photo blew up the internet, she was fired from her job working at Akima.

  
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Now the outspoken Democrat is suing Akima for missing severance, according to NBC News.

“I filed this lawsuit against my former employer today because I believe that Americans should not be forced to choose between their principles and their paychecks,” Briskman said to CNBC on Wednesday.

Briskman, 50, was employed by  Akima, a government contracted company during the time she was photographed exercising her free speech to the President of the United States. She said that she was forced to resign after the political photo went viral because she had allegedly violated the company’s social media policy.

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“I never imagined that my ‘one-finger salute’ to the Presidential motorcade and its occupant would cost me my job,” Briskman said. “The actions of my company were swift and unexpected.”

Akima has a social media policy in place, but Briskman said that it was enforced differently for her. For instance, she said that several months ago she reported a male colleague who called their coworkers “”f—ing Libtard assh–es” but that the company did nothing. This coworker had a reference to Akima as their Facebook cover photo and was in a management position.



Briskman’s legal team said that she was fired because she was opposed to Trump instead of for Trump, and she noted that her male colleague who used terms such as “Libtard” was not fired, even though he was political on social media.

“Akima’s actions — forcing Juli to resign out of fear of unlawful retaliation by the government — violated the basic tenets of Virginia employment law,” Maria Simon, an attorney for Briskman, said in a statement to Boston.com. “Ms. Briskman chose in her private time and in her capacity as a private citizen to express her disapproval of President Trump by extending her middle finger.”

Briskman said that her political speech was stifled by Akima, which is a violation of Virginia law and the Constitution, according to Boston.com. She is seeking $2,692 for two weeks of severance that she was promised but not given. She also sought the reimbursement of her legal fees.

Akima is a government contracted company that specializes in network operations and cybersecurity. The company is located in Virginia, which has an at-will employment policy, meaning that employers can fire employees at any time as long as they are not violating federal discrimination laws.

What do you think of Briskman’s lawsuit against Akima? Let us know in the comments below.



 

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