Halunen Law representing plaintiff in retaliation case against Mayo Clinic Hospital

June 8th, 2021

Employee alleges wrongful termination in violation of Minnesota Human Rights Act after reporting sexual assault by assistant supervisor.

MINNEAPOLIS (June 7, 2021): Halunen Law recently filed a lawsuit in Olmsted County on behalf of plaintiff Yelena Ryabchuk against Mayo Clinic Hospital-Rochester (Mayo). In her lawsuit, Ryabchuk, a former Housekeeper at Mayo Clinic, alleges that Mayo terminated her for reporting being sexually assaulted by her supervisor while at work. The lawsuit alleges that in October 2020, Ms. Ryabchuk was raped by Assistant Supervisor Tapiwa Nyamayaro at Mayo’s St. Mary’s hospital campus. Soon after, according to the lawsuit, she reported the rape to the Rochester Police Department and to her managers at Mayo. The lawsuit alleges that rather than supporting Ryabchuk when she reported the rape, the supervisors, all of whom were male, interrogated her, raised their voices, accused her of lying, and placed her on leave. Mayo then terminated her employment, claiming she had made a false report of rape. According to the lawsuit, Mr. Nyamayaro was neither disciplined nor terminated for the rape.

“The allegations, in this case, are deeply disturbing,” said Ms. Ryabchuk’s attorney, Emma Denny of Halunen Law. “The Minnesota Human Rights Act prohibits employers from retaliating against employees for reporting sexual assault. Under the law, employers do not get to serve as judge and jury when an employee reports a rape and fire her because they decide they don’t believe her. Employees would never come forward with reports of sexual assault at work if they thought they were putting their job in jeopardy by doing so.” Denny added, “It is shocking that in the #MeToo era, a company of Mayo’s size and stature would be subject to these kinds of allegations. Our client has bravely brought this lawsuit not only to get justice for herself but to hopefully deter companies from engaging in the type of behavior she has alleged. We look forward to holding Mayo accountable and getting our client the justice that is due.”

About Halunen Law: With offices in Minneapolis, Chicago, and Phoenix, Halunen Law offers experienced legal representation to employees, whistleblowers, and those who have been wrongfully injured. Halunen Law has achieved a reputation as a fearless, tenacious, and successful plaintiffs’ law firm, with a laser focus on achieving justice for its clients. For more information visit halunenlaw.com.

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