Gallaudet employee seeks reinstatement

By BRIAN WITTE | October 16, 2012 | 7:35 PM EDT

Angela McCaskill, chief diversity officer at Gallaudet University, using sign language and speaking through an interpreter, addresses a news conference on Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2012 in Annapolis, Md., about being put on leave from her job after signing a petition to put Maryland’s same-sex marriage law on the ballot for voters to decide. She is asking to be reinstated to her position. (AP Photo/Brian Witte)

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — The chief diversity officer at the nation's leading university for the deaf and hard of hearing is fighting for her job after signing a petition to put same-sex marriage on the ballot next month.

Gallaudet University officials placed Angela McCaskill on leave. President T. Allan Hurwitz said Tuesday that her signing of the petition left many at the university "concerned and confused."

Speaking publicly for the first time Tuesday, McCaskill said she signed the petition to give Maryland residents a chance to vote on same-sex marriage and to spur a campuswide dialogue on the issue.

In his statement, Hurwitz said the Washington, D. C.-based university wants to work with McCaskill and that he believes a resolution can be reached that would enable her to continue in her job.