In October 2017, cyclist Juli Briskman was photographed giving the middle finger to President Donald Trump's motorcade during a weekend bike ride in Virginia. The photo quickly went viral, and on the Monday after it was taken, Briskman informed her employer, government contractor Akima, that she was the cyclist pictured. The next day, she was fired.
Now, Briskman is suing Akima.
"I filed this lawsuit against my former employer today because I believe that Americans should not be forced to choose between their principles and their paychecks," says the 50-year-old single mother of two in a statement shared with CNBC Make It on Wednesday.
At the time of the event, Akima said that Briskman was forced to resign because she was in violation of the company's social media policy for sharing the photo on her Facebook and Twitter accounts. CNBC Make It reached out to Akima but had not received a response at the time of publication.
"I never imagined that my 'one-finger salute' to the Presidential motorcade and its occupant would cost me my job," says Briskman. "The actions of my company were swift and unexpected."