The former president of Brigham Young University's Black Student Association has filed two complaints of employee discrimination against the school, saying he was fired for what other people of other races are doing and have done in the past.
Gary Thompson, a 25-year-old student from Ranchos Palos Verdes, Calif., joined his attorney and the vice president of the Salt Lake branch of the NAACP to discuss the filings and discrimination investigations during a press conference Wednesday at the state office building."I believe every student should be aware of this unethical and unchris-tianlike practice," Thompson said. `I do not desire to seek attention or give BYU a bad name. I only want to get the cold hard facts on the table."
Employee discrimination charges were filed simultaneously with the Equal Employment Opportunity Committee and the State Anti-Discrimination Board, said Richard Clark, Thompson's attorney.
Thompson was asked by Rush Sumpter, director of student leadership development at BYU, to resign from his position in January after he failed to complete 12 credit hours during the fall semester as required by the work-study program contract.
But Thompson said the work-study contract he signed gave him a semester grace period if he fell below 12 hours. The week before fall semester finals, Thompson withdrew from six of his 12 classes for "difficult personal circumstances."
He said he was facing serious family problems following a divorce and the death of a friend.
Sumpter said Thompson was also asked to resign because he went beyond his budget in arranging for speakers during BYU's Black Awareness Week Jan. 30 to Feb. 3.
Clark said his client had to withdraw from school and most likely will not be able to attend law school in 1990.
"A year of his life is gone because of the discrimination of an administrator," Clark said. "I think discrimination is a definite possibility and a sole motivating factor."
BYU Spokesman Paul Richards said the resignation was clearly not a discriminatory action and was more reverse discrimination.
"If he was the president of a non-black club and was replaced with a white, that would be something else. He is somehow trying to make it a discrimination issue."
Richards said a number of students are released for lack of prog-ress or for not keeping up their minimum hours, but Thompson has managed to keep up the furor.
Thompson said approximately 300 black students attend BYU and 200 are members of the Black Student Association. A newly elected BSA president was approved last week to take Thompson's place.