Suspended UI professor's attorney requests disciplinary hearing

BY DI STAFF | FEBRUARY 15, 2012 6:30 AM

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A suspended University of Iowa radiology professor's attorney requested Tuesday a disciplinary hearing to determine the status of that professor's employment and that the professor continues to receive pay during suspension.

Malik Juweid, 50, filed a complaint with the Iowa Civil Rights Commission in December 2010 alleging his supervisor, UI radiology Professor Lauri Fajardo, referred to him as an "academic terrorist" and called a Pakistani staff member "Osama bin Laden."

Juweid was placed on paid leave on the recommendation of a Threat Assessment Team. He then filed a lawsuit on May 6, 2011, naming the UI, state Board of Regents, and numerous UI officials, claiming UI officials retaliated against him for speaking out in his department against discrimination of Arab-Americans and the medical mistreatment of children.

UI spokesman Tom Moore said Juweid was placed on unpaid medical leave in December 2011, no longer allowing him his $241,000 annual salary. Juweid's attorney, Rockne Cole, said this occurred after Juweid filed a request under the Family Medical Leave Act in September 2011.

Cole said Juweid was not afforded his right to a disciplinary hearing before his paycheck stopped because no disciplinary process occurred upon Juweid's placement on paid leave. Therefore, Cole said, Juweid should be paid until the disciplinary hearing.

George Carroll, assistant attorney general representing the UI, said Juweid's own medical-leave status originally put the faculty hearing off.

At the hearing Monday, Cole requested the hearing "as a matter of law and of procedural due process," noting he hasn't had the opportunity to provide evidence of Juweid's medical condition. Juweid also has a right to rebut the allegations, he said.

— by Beth Bratsos

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