24-year old Michael Troina a former firefighter from Queens has claimed that was told to “have sex with a stripper” to prove he isn’t gay, he has since filed a federal discrimination lawsuit against the FDNY.
Torina was a member of Ladder Co 1/Engine Co 7 and was subjected to “hazing rituals” which included homophobic and racist abuse, to stomping on his bunker gear, putting peanut butter on his car and taking his face and superimposing it on a crying baby.
Nine firefighters, three lieutenants, two chiefs, Daniel Nigro (Fire Commissioner) and the city of New York as defendants. In the lawsuit, Troina stated that he “was singled out time and time again on account of his race and national origin as a Hispanic American male as well as perceived homosexuality” Furthermore, was “threatened with physical violence if he dared to report any incident of battery, harassment or discrimination to the FDNY’s Equal Employment Opportunity Office.”
The worst and most disturbing is the claim that Troina colleagues “tried to coerce” him to “have sex with a stripper” just to prove he wasn’t a homosexual. Troina refused and was called a “faggot”, a “closet homo” and a “closet homo”, as alleged in the suit. He also recalls an account when he was excluded from a firehouse volleyball outing, and was told his colleagues described him with homophobic insults.
Another time he saw another firefighter doing an impression of him, when he reported this incident to his supervisor, he was told it was done “in good fun and to not take it too hard.”
In the suit is claiming that Troina suffered “mental and emotional stress” and endured “constant discrimination and ridicule, the lawsuit seeks unspecified damages.