Readers of this blog may recall a previous posting about a Catholic schoolteacher who was fired from his job just two short weeks after marrying his male partner. The man filed a wrongful termination lawsuit against his former employer, claiming his termination was illegal for numerous reasons. The reasons included a violation of California's Labor Code, a breach of contract and a violation of public policy.
The man's lawsuit was filed on March 12 and a California judge has just recently allowed him to move forward with this lawsuit involving illegal employment discrimination. After the man filed his lawsuit, his former employer raised the argument that the teacher's arguments were barred from being brought against them in a court of law because the Constitution requires a separation of church and state. However, a California judge recently rejected these arguments and told the teacher that he could move forward with his case.
Although this is very good news for the teacher, it does not mean that he has won his case yet. He could very possibly still have a long road ahead of him. This is a perfect example of how a situation that seems like blatant workplace discrimination on the surface still remains open to interpretation. The good news is that the man has an attorney representing him that will help to take on a large portion of the hardship and burden of proving that the termination was wrongful. If the courts determine that this man's termination was wrongful, he will likely be able to recover compensation from the school.
It is important that residents of California understand that workplace discrimination is illegal, even if it does not ultimately result in termination. There are protections against this type of workplace behavior and treatment. Those that experience it should do their best to recover the compensation to which they are entitled.
Source: Beverly Hills Courier, "Teacher Fired For Marrying Gay Partner," June 18, 2014