BJ Lutz, NBC Chicago, April 14, 2011
A former employee of the Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr. at the Rainbow Push Coalition has filed a bombshell wrongful termination and discrimination complaint against the civil rights leader with the City of Chicago’s Commission on Human Rights.
The complaint, filed sometime last year by Tommy R. Bennett, a regular on the Tom Joynder Radio show and member of Barack Obama’s LGBT Leadership Council, includes shocking allegations about Jackson’s behavior toward the openly gay staffer including an allegation that the civil rights leader propositioned him.
Bennett, 55, claims Jackson ridiculed him in front of other employees and required him to perform “humiliating tasks” like escorting women to Jackson’s various hotel rooms, cleaning up after alleged trysts and packing his clothing. It also includes an allegation that Jackson asked for oral sex, according to the claim. Jackson flatly denied each claim in his response.
In that capacity, Bennett alleges to “clean his [hotel] room after sexual intercourse with women.”
Bennett’s complaint requests back and front pay, compensation for emotional distress and punitive damages all to the tune of roughly $450,000. Bennett also wants an amendment to the civil rights organization’s non-discrimination policy to include sexual orientation and gender identity.