Richard Reed finds himself in a courtroom alongside defense attorneys who make three times what he makes. But he’s the one with the inspiring work.
Practicing what he terms “employment law from the worker’s side” with the Law Offices of Judith Lonnquist, Reed has taken the worker’s side up to the state Supreme Court, arguing successfully in 2005 for the employment rights of a man fired due to depression and post-traumatic stress disorder. Now, because of a separate ruling by that court that all but rewrote the state’s disability discrimination law, he and other civil rights and disability attorneys and advocates are pushing for Senate Bill 5340 and House Bill 1322. Both bills reinstate the old, broader definition of a handicap and roundly condemn the court’s action.
Reed’s father was one of those other, better paid attorneys, defending insurers and other companies for 41 years. Why did he take up the prosecutor’s side? “I got to wear the white hat against the bad guys; sometimes I got money and sometimes I didn’t, but I’ve found it really invigorating.”
For copy of actual issue, go to https://www.realchangenews.org/2007/02/14/feb-14-2007-entire-issue