ARMENIAN-BORN ANI CHOPOURIAN WINS $168 MILLION IN HARASSMENT LAWSUIT
- Armenian-born Ani Chopourian filed at least 18 complaints of sexual harassment during her two years of work at Sacramento's Mercy General Hospital. Those complaints were not taken seriously by the hospital's administrators but they were by a jury of her peers who awarded Chopourian $168 million on Friday, March 2, The Inquisitr reported.
Among her complaints was a surgeon who stabbed her with a needle and then broke the ribs of an anesthetized heart patient in a fit of rage and another surgeon who would greet her each morning by slapping her on the butt and proclaim "I'm horny." Another surgeon reportedly called her the "stupid chick" in the operating room and then made fun of her Armenian heritage, going so far as to ask if she had joined Al Qaeda.
During the case executives for Mercy General attempted to portray Chopourian as an unprofessional worker who's own misconduct led to her firing and a refusal by the hospital to provide her with unemployment benefits.
The $168 million award for damages is the largest single plaintiff award in U.S. history for a sexual harassment case. Speaking after the award was handed down Chopourian's attorney Lawrance Bohm proclaimed:
"They were just shocked by the whole workplace environment."
Having worked at various other hospitals over the years Chopourian said in her testimony:
"The environment at Mercy General, the sexually inappropriate conduct and the patient care issues being ignored, the bullying and intimidation and retaliation - I have never seen an environment so hostile and pervasive."
The hospitals defense was hurt by a litany of current and former complains which swayed the jury to believe that the hospital was not working in its employees best interests. Ani Chopourian continued in her statement:
"Cardiac surgery brings in the most money for any hospital facility, which is why they are willing to turn a blind eye to illegal and inappropriate behavior. We had four very strong witnesses who were frightened to speak out but did so because they felt it was important that someone put a stop to this."
It's likely that the plaintiffs $125 million in punitive damages and $42.7 million for lost wages and mental anguish will be reduced on appeal, however the plaintiff's lawyer is confident that the actual guilty verdict will stand up in appeal court.
Chopourian earned her degree from the Yale School of Medicine in 1999.
- 1842 Birth of the great Armenian benefactor, petroleum magnat Alexander Mantashian in Tbilissi. He made donations to the Church (Ejmiadsin) and founded schools in Constantinople, Tbilissi, and Kareen -among other places. He also built the new building of the Nersisian School.
- 1872 The "Union for Salvation" is formed in Van (Western Armenia).
- 1878 Treaty of San Stefano signed between Russia and Turkey. Article 16 of the San Stefano Treaty guaranteed the security of Armenians in Western Armenia under the Turkish Empire. Article 61 of the Treaty of Berlin, however, annuled these guarantees and the majority of the Armenian lands were given to the Turks.
- 1905 Start of the Armenian - Tatar War.
- 1918 Signature of the Treaty of Brest-Litovsk between Russia and Germany.
- 1918 Signnature of the Russian - Turkish supplemental treaty in connection with the Peace Treaty between Russia, on the one hand, and Germany, Austria - Hungary, Bulgaria and Turkey on the other.
- 1920 The Boshevik "Workers' Struggle" Armenian newspaper is published in New Nakhichevan (Rostov, Russia).
- 1930 Opening of the National Seminary.
- 1935 Birth of writer Hrant Matevossyan.
- 1943 The first volume of the novel "Vardanank", written by Derenik Demirchyan, is published during World War 2 (the Great Patriotic War). Soldiers passed it from hand to hand on the front.
- 1953 Opening of the Armenian Manuscript Depository: the Matenadaran (Architect - Mark Grigoryan). The Matenadaran has more than 13 000 ancient manuscripts and more than 100 000 archived documents.
- 1955 Hovhannes Issakov is promoted to Admiral of the Fleet (USSR).
- 1958 Yerevan's Matenadaran (Manuscript Depository) is declared a Research Institute.