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Last Updated: Tuesday, 5 April 2005, 13:28 GMT 14:28 UK
US librarian loses 'sexy' lawsuit
Desiree Goodwin
Ms Goodwin says she plans to remain in her job for the time being
A US librarian who said she was passed over for promotion because of her image and race has lost a lawsuit against her employer Harvard University.

A court ruled Desiree Goodwin, a black 40-year-old with two Masters degrees, had not suffered any discrimination.

Ms Goodwin claimed she was overlooked for 16 promotions and kept in the same job since she was hired in 1994.

She said a superior told her she could not be promoted because she was viewed as a sexily dressed "pretty girl".

According to court documents, she claimed the supervisor told her she was seen as a "joke" because she wore "low-cut blouses" and "tight pants".

A spokesman for Harvard University said the court's verdict supported the university's stance "that racial and gender discrimination were not a factor".

"Employment at Harvard is based on the specific work skills and work history applicants bring to specific jobs," he said.

Ms Goodwin said she was disappointed in the verdict, but proud to have "stood up for herself".

She said she was grateful to her lawyers and believes it is difficult to prove discrimination on the basis of gender or race in a federal court.

For the time being, she says, she plans to continue working as an assistant librarian at the university's Graduate School of Design.

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