ATLANTA — The Atlanta city council has agreed to a $1.2 million settlement with former fire chief Kelvin Cochran over his January 2015 termination for his views about marriage and sexuality.
The city council voted 11-3 after an executive session Oct. 15 during which city attorneys recommended a settlement and legal fees negotiated with the religious liberty organization Alliance Defending Freedom, which has handled Cochran’s court case, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.
Beyond the city council’s decision, Cochran told Baptist Press on Oct. 17, God has been faithful through what he calls “the fiery trial.”
He has had numerous opportunities to give his testimony in worship services and to speak at men’s meetings and conferences. He also completed a doctorate in interdisciplinary leadership in May through Creighton University in Omaha, Neb.
The Atlanta city council decision was celebrated by the Alliance Defending Freedom but bemoaned by the former mayor, Kasim Reed, who had fired Cochran, a decorated fire official and former U.S. Fire Administrator under President Obama.
Prompting the settlement was a federal judge’s ruling last December declaring as unconstitutional city requirements that an employee must obtain pre-clearance for publishing a book such as Cochran’s 162-page men’s devotional that included a brief section describing homosexual behavior as immoral.