New York state Judge Mary Brigantti-Hughes has been censured by the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct for a variety of actions to implicitly coerce those who worked for her into taking part in her religious beliefs and activities. The ABA Journal reports the details:
According to an agreed-upon statement of facts cited by the commission, Brigantti-Hughes:
• Asked her secretary and a court attorney to pick up her daughter and babysit the child.
• Brought her child to court and asked staffers to watch her.
• Asked her secretary drive her to the hair salon and to shopping.
• Directed staffers to type or copy religious material for her personal use.
• Asked a court attorney to accompany her to Home Depot to buy and pot plants for a church function.
• Asked court staff to join her in prayer in court chambers, and asked staffers to attend religious events after regular business hours…
Brigantti-Hughes had asserted that she didn’t intend to coerce any staffers into participating in religious activities. She “now recognizes, however, that such requests are inherently coercive when made by a judge to her personal appointees or other court employees,” the determination says.
Glad she recognizes that now.