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Mpls. to pay firefighter $785k in tennis shoe discrimination case

Star Tribune - 1/17/2020

A dispute over tennis shoes is likely going to cost the city of Minneapolis$785,000.

Former firefighter Keith Daniel sued the city for disability discrimination in 2015, saying that he was injured after a supervisor told him he couldn’t wear doctor-prescribed shoes because they violated the department’s footwear policy. He injured his ankle and later his shoulder while climbing down a fire truck and took an early retirement.

The case took a winding trip through the state’s court system, heading all the way to the state Supreme Court before it eventually went to trial. A jury ruled in his favor in October of 2019, but legal wrangling continued over the amount of money the city should pay in damages.

On Friday, the Minneapolis City Council approved a $785,000 settlement for Daniel and his attorneys. The council asked Mayor Jacob Frey to quickly sign off on the agreement.

Daniel’s attorney, Joshua R. Williams, said Friday morning that he was thrilled for his client.

“I’m just happy for my friend that he can finally move on with his life,” Williams said.

This story is developing and will be updated.

Liz Navratil • 612-673-4994

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