A former intern and part-time employee at the University of Wyoming has filed a lawsuit against the institution, claiming he was discriminated against for being a white, heterosexual, Christian man opposed to critical race theory. He is seeking nearly $875,000 in total damages.
Various university employees, including President Ed Siedel, are also parties in the lawsuit.
Jeffrey Lynn Wilkins worked in the Wyoming Technology Transfer and Research Products Center from 2015 to 2021, first as an intern while completing his law degree and then later as an intellectual property analyst. A request for full-time employment was denied, the lawsuit states, which Wilkins claims was because he did not fit into diversity hiring goals at the university.
Additionally, Wilkins objected to diversity training, which the lawsuit describes as “steeped in CRT.” Once an obscure academic concept, CRT has emerged in recent years as a buzzword used by conservatives to describe what they claim is a liberal ploy to distort America's racial history. The lawsuit claims that after his objections to diversity training in 2019, Wilkins had his hours cut and faced discrimination from supervisors, which continued until his termination in 2021.
The lawsuit was filed on Sept. 19, and the University of Wyoming has not yet issued a legal response, but officials told The Casper Star-Tribune that the claims in the lawsuit have no merit.