Philanthropist accused of calling butler ‘sissy’ and making him sleep on floor loses lawsuit
A wealthy American philanthropist will have to pay out more than $38,000 after being sued by her former butler for allegedly making homophobic remarks and making him sleep on the floor.
Soros, who was married to the late Paul Soros, a mechanical engineer and investor, must now cough up $38,079.46 to Mohammed, who claims she once told him that she had “money and I can treat people however I want.”
In the lawsuit, filed in Manhattan federal court, last April, Trinidad-born Mohammed, who is gay, said that Soros called him a “sissy” and at one point told him: “It’s better to be married to your husband than to go out there and get AIDS.”
Mohammed then said he confronted Soros over the comment, which he felt stereotyped gay people as promiscuous, to which he claimed she responded: “That’s what you all say.”
He also alleged that the philanthropist forced him to sleep on a mattress on the floor – while white, straight members staff of staff were allowed to sleep in beds.
The former butler claimed that Soros bullied him “in a manner she never treated any white or heterosexual employees.”
Soros runs a fellowship programme – called Paul & Daisy Soros Fellowships for New Americans – for immigrants to the US and their children.
PinkNews has contacted the fellowship program for comment.
In an interview with New York Daily News in April, Mohammed said: “I was disgusted. Not every gay person sleeps around.”
He added that Soros’ treatment made him “feel like a slave, I couldn’t believe it was happening.”
Mohammed began working as a weekend butler for Soros in October 2013, and finally complained to his boss in September 2016 after he wasn’t paid for several days.
“My last name is Soros and I know some very powerful people,” Soros reportedly yelled in response. “You are nobody and I will fire you the next time you talk to me about anything that is not your f—–g business.”
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Soros will now have to pay Mohammed $14,000 in back pay, $14,000 in damages, and $10,000 in lawyer costs.
Soros was born in Hungary but later moved to the US after enrolling at Columbia University.
She has received a number of awards and honours for her philanthropic work.
Soros also holds a number of senior posts at arts organisations, including secretary on the board of the New York Philharmonic and advisory director of the Metropolitan Opera.