RENO — A former professor at the University of Nevada, Reno has filed a lawsuit against the school president and the state university system seeking reinstatement and claiming he was fired in retaliation for publicizing animal abuse at campus research farms.
In addition to getting his job back, Hussein S. Hussein’s lawsuit seeks an injunction that would order retroactive pay of his $98,000 annual salary with full benefits. It also seeks to rescind UNR President Milton Glick’s order banning him from campus when he fired him April 11.
“The instant termination is but the latest in a six-year campaign to destroy Dr. Hussein and his career,” according to the lawsuit filed Tuesday in Washoe County District Court.
“Dr. Hussein reported affirmative action violations and animal abuse at UNR and has ever since been the target of punishment by those he exposed,” including Glick, the suit said.
Hussein, an internationally renowned animal nutritionist, began working in 1997 as an associate professor in the Department of Animal Biotechnology in UNR’s College of Agriculture, Biotechnology and Natural Resources.
A federal investigation sparked by Hussein’s complaints about UNR’s animal farm and labs resulted in the U.S. Department of Agriculture citing the university for 46 violations of federal animal welfare regulations from May 2004 to March 2005.
The violations included repeatedly leaving research pigs without adequate water and housing, frequent poor sanitation and lack of veterinary care. The school agreed to pay an $11,400 fine.
Glick fired Hussein after a disciplinary hearing based on claims that Hussein plagiarized his graduate students’ work and misrepresented money given to support his research to improve his laboratory instead of sharing it with the university to pay for overhead costs.