UC Biologist Says No to Sexual Harassment Training, Risks Job

Calls the training "a naked political act that offended my sensibilities"

A prominent biologist at UC Irvine could be placed on unpaid leave because he refuses to take sexual harassment prevention training.

Sixty-four-year-old Alexander McPherson calls the mandatory training a "sham" and considers his refusal and act of "civil disobedience." He has already been relieved of his duties supervising other scientists in the lab where he studies proteins.

McPherson has generated about $20 million in research money since he joined the university in 1997.

He can attend a November 12 harassment training course and regain his standing but said he won't, even if it means suspension from his job that pays nearly $150,000 a year.

McPherson says the legislation requiring the training is -- quote -- "a naked political act by the state that offended my sensibilities, violated my rights as a tenured professor, impugned my character and cast a shadow of suspicion on my reputation and career."

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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