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Kanye West amidst fresh controversy after former Donda Academy employees sue him for racial discrimination

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Kanye West and controversies just cannot seem to stay away from each other for too long. This time, the “Violent Crimes” hitmaker Kanye West, his Donda Academy school, and its directors have been charged with a lawsuit for alleged racial discrimination and wrongful termination brought forth by two former employees, Cecilia Hailey, and Chekarey Byers.

According to the legal documents, Hailey and Byers claim that they were subjected to discrimination based on their race, had their wages unlawfully withheld, and were fired in March 2023 as a form of retaliation for reporting code violations. The plaintiffs also state that they were the only black female teachers employed at Donda Academy. The lawsuit identifies Brianne Campbell, Allison Tidwell, and Chris Julian, who served as school directors, as defendants as well.

Hailey also stated that she had reported multiple health and safety violations as well as illegal educational practices at Donda Academy to the school’s principal, Moira Love, but nothing was done about them. The documents further allege that the students were provided with only one meal per day, which consisted of sushi, and were not allowed to bring in outside food or beverages except for water.

Moreover, the teachers also asserted that the Yeezy fashion designer prohibited activities such as crossword puzzles and coloring sheets and prevented children from going outside during the day, even during lunch or recess. The doors to the school in Simi Valley, California, were allegedly locked from the outside, which posed a risk in the event of a fire.

As per the lawsuit, Donda Academy, which shut down temporarily in the fall after Kanye West made anti-Semitic remarks, lacked adequate medical staff, and medications for children were reportedly kept in the janitorial closet. The plaintiffs assert that no measures were taken to address their concerns regarding sanitation, health, safety, or education standards, which they raised throughout their tenure at the school, in accordance with local and state laws.

The documents also allege that when Byers and Hailey brought their complaints to Love, she described them as “aggressive in the presence of others.” The suit claims that this type of comment reinforces harmful stereotypes about African-American women who speak up about legitimate issues to provide a safe learning environment for their students.

The plaintiffs claimed that their employment was terminated on March 3, 2023, in the school parking lot without being given a reason for their dismissal. They have filed a lawsuit seeking compensation for unpaid wages, loss of earnings, and other employment benefits. In addition, they are seeking damages for emotional distress and medical expenses.

In a statement, Byers expressed her sadness over the situation, saying that she was a huge Kanye West fan and felt honored to work at Donda Academy. However, she added that while the school’s vision may have sounded good on paper, in reality, it was like a mental hospital being run by the patients, with chaos and mutiny prevailing.


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