Four San Diego firemen have been awarded damages after they were forced to participate in the city’s Pride parade against their will.

After two days of deliberation, a jury found that the men were sexually harassed in the parade and awarded them a total of $34,300 in damages, which they must share.

The men – Alex Kane, Chad Allison, Captain Jason Hewitt and Captain John Ghiotto – said that that they suffered verbal sexual harassment from members of the public who participated in the city’s 2007 parade.

They also claimed that they were on the receiving end of teasing and jokes from colleagues for having taken part in the event.

An earlier trial ended in a mistrial after that jury was unable to come to an agreement on the matter.

San Diego’s openly lesbian fire chief, Tracy Jarman, had apologised to the men before the start of the first trial and changed the department’s policy so that participation in the annual event by personnel is voluntary.

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