Gay teacher fired by Catholic school ...

Gay teacher fired by Catholic school claims discrimination

There are 1746 comments on the World Magazine story from Apr 23, 2013, titled Gay teacher fired by Catholic school claims discrimination. In it, World Magazine reports that:

Carla Hale, 59, a lesbian P.E. teacher, has filed a grievance against the diocese of the Ohio Catholic school where she worked for 19 years until administrators fired her for "violating moral law." According to The Columbus Dispatch , Hale's sexual orientation became public when an obituary for her late mother published Hale's name along with the ... (more)

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Dan

Omaha, NE

#1342 May 6, 2013
FKA Reader wrote:
<quoted text>
Hannah-Tabor will not provide the Diocese with much protection. The grounds on which it was decided were that the teacher in question (let go rather than provide disability accommodations that would have otherwise been required under the ADA) was a "called" teacher. That is, she had been provided with religious instruction beyond her content area certification and as a part of her job was required to provide instruction in the religious area. Using this criteria, the court ruled that she was included in the ministerial exemption and therefore not protected under ADA.
If such criteria were to be applied in this case, Ms. Hale would NOT fall under the ministerial exemption because she is not a "called" arm of the clergy and her instruction was limited to physical education.
On advantage the Catholic Church has (as opposed to a congregationally-based church) is that their doctrines are codified and are well-known to their adherents, employees and the general public. Hale will have a very hard time convincing anyone that she didn't think being married to her lesbian partner would be an issue with her Catholic school employer should it become public knowledge.
Dan

Omaha, NE

#1343 May 6, 2013
FKA Reader wrote:
<quoted text>
Ms. Hale has an attorney who has said essentially the same things.
My knowledge of the contract comes from the relevant portions that have been posted here by people who swear that the morality clause is clear (despite not saying so) that lesbians are not to enter into quasi-marital couplings, or they will be summarily fired. I have challenged those in the know (according to their own estimation) to bring forth the words which make this clear, but so far, none have been able to.
I absolutely get that many here believe that people who are gay are by their very nature sinful and to be avoided.
The question is how far, legally, a church-run school can go in denying such people employment based on that belief.
Can't let you get by scot free on your presumption here-that the premise in play is that "people who are gay are by their very nature sinful and to be avoided."

That's not what the Church teaches about gay people, thus their relieving Hale of her job wasn't based upon that.

“Don't trust the internet!”

Since: Jan 12

Location hidden

#1344 May 6, 2013
Dan wrote:
<quoted text>
The whole school is an extension of Catholic ministry. The Church RUNS the school-thus the teachers are an extension of Catholic ministry by virtue of their being there in their role as teacher.
I don't think that will hold up in court, at least not by the criteria that the court laid out in Hannah-Tabor.

“Don't trust the internet!”

Since: Jan 12

Location hidden

#1345 May 6, 2013
Dan wrote:
<quoted text>
Here's Watterston's Mission Statement:
"Bishop Watterson High School Mission Statement - Restore all things in Christ by educating in the Catholic tradition through prayer, service and study."
http://www.bishopwatterson.com/about/mission
Not terribly ambiguous.
Was Ms. Hale hired to lead prayer? to lead religious study? to lead service?

“Don't trust the internet!”

Since: Jan 12

Location hidden

#1346 May 6, 2013
Dan wrote:
<quoted text>
Hale, unfortunately, won't be coming to court with clean hands on this. She did violate the contract. She hasn't denied that (to my knowledge). She wants a post facto remedy.
She appealed under the terms of the contract.

As her appeal was turned down, what remains are two claims (according to her lawyer's statement). One is that the contract was ambiguous with regard to "morality." The second is that the Diocese violated the Columbus City ordinance that prohibits employment discrimination based on sexuality.

“Don't trust the internet!”

Since: Jan 12

Location hidden

#1347 May 6, 2013
-Clayton Bigsby wrote:
<quoted text>You'd love to see him dead, Reader. You all but say it in your hate-filled posts on the subject.
George, as always, you are a very poor interpretor of my feelings and beliefs.
Dan

Omaha, NE

#1348 May 6, 2013
FKA Reader wrote:
<quoted text>
I don't think that will hold up in court, at least not by the criteria that the court laid out in Hannah-Tabor.
The school could certainly apply that argument-that the teachers are all an extension of the ministry.

I don't think it's going to go past the employment contract.

“Don't trust the internet!”

Since: Jan 12

Location hidden

#1349 May 6, 2013
-Clayton Bigsby wrote:
<quoted text>You'd love to see him dead, Reader. You all but say it in your hate-filled posts on the subject.
BTW--are you admitting that you have no specific citation to back up your statement?

“Don't trust the internet!”

Since: Jan 12

Location hidden

#1350 May 6, 2013
Dan wrote:
<quoted text>
On advantage the Catholic Church has (as opposed to a congregationally-based church) is that their doctrines are codified and are well-known to their adherents, employees and the general public. Hale will have a very hard time convincing anyone that she didn't think being married to her lesbian partner would be an issue with her Catholic school employer should it become public knowledge.
Not at all certain that is relevant.

Particularly since the passage of the Columbus ordinance.
Dan

Omaha, NE

#1351 May 6, 2013
FKA Reader wrote:
<quoted text>
Was Ms. Hale hired to lead prayer? to lead religious study? to lead service?
I have no idea if the students ever prayed in her class-likely they did.

She may have had duty to take them to Mass at school on various occasions.

I don't know and neither do you.

She DID, certainly, teach students enrolled at the school, IN the school-thus, her work was part of the mission described.

-Clayton Bigsby

Since: Apr 13

Hilliard, OH

#1352 May 6, 2013
FKA Reader wrote:
<quoted text>
George, as always, you are a very poor interpretor of my feelings and beliefs.
Wrong. You're a hysterical liar of the lowest kind.

“Don't trust the internet!”

Since: Jan 12

Location hidden

#1353 May 6, 2013
Dan wrote:
<quoted text>
Can't let you get by scot free on your presumption here-that the premise in play is that "people who are gay are by their very nature sinful and to be avoided."
That's not what the Church teaches about gay people, thus their relieving Hale of her job wasn't based upon that.
We have several balls in play here. One is the official policy of the Catholic Church. Then there is the enacted policy as carried out by the Diocese (I would argue that they are not the same. Hard to say that the way in which Hale was let go demonstrated understanding, sympathy or kindness). Then there are the many opinions of people posting here.

Someone posting earlier as "concerned parent" (same name as the anonymous letter-writer) was quite clear that mere contact between Ms. Hale and students was loathsome. While there is certainly a wide range of opinions possible, there are far too many who think/believe akin to this writer--hiding behind claims of morality and church teaching.

-Clayton Bigsby

Since: Apr 13

Hilliard, OH

#1354 May 6, 2013
FKA Reader wrote:
<quoted text>
BTW--are you admitting that you have no specific citation to back up your statement?
Read what I wrote.

“Don't trust the internet!”

Since: Jan 12

Location hidden

#1355 May 6, 2013
Dan wrote:
<quoted text>
I have no idea if the students ever prayed in her class-likely they did.
She may have had duty to take them to Mass at school on various occasions.
I don't know and neither do you.
She DID, certainly, teach students enrolled at the school, IN the school-thus, her work was part of the mission described.
Again, were the Diocese to make that claim in a court of law, one might expect them to back it up with facts about their expectations and how this was carried out. As this was high school, it isn't likely that Ms. Hale was "taking" anyone to Mass at school. Were this an elementary school, such a task would likely be limited to walking them down the hall and not constitute any religiously-related behavior.

They might further consider whether her relationship to the religious mission was greater than say a cafeteria worker, a bus driver, a janitor and the like (or a special education tutor provided by the local district). They might consider whether this relationship was supported in any way by special training or "call" (as was the case in Hannah-Tabor). I believe that the courts in the past have been reluctant to declare every person hired by a church for non-religious work to be exempt under the ministerial exemption. Hannah-Tabor was an expansion. But it did not go far enough to cover Hale.

“Don't trust the internet!”

Since: Jan 12

Location hidden

#1356 May 6, 2013
-Clayton Bigsby wrote:
<quoted text>Read what I wrote.
I did.

I do not see a specific citation.

Just your usual claims to understand what my innermost thoughts and feelings are.

“Don't trust the internet!”

Since: Jan 12

Location hidden

#1357 May 6, 2013
Dan wrote:
<quoted text>
The school could certainly apply that argument-that the teachers are all an extension of the ministry.
I don't think it's going to go past the employment contract.
You're not an attorney, are you?

“animis opibusque parati”

Since: Oct 12

Location hidden

#1358 May 6, 2013
FKA Reader wrote:
<quoted text>
I thought everyone was screaming that the contract was mutually agreed to.
You can agree with the RCC definition of morality all you want. That still does not mean that the contract protects the Diocese in this case. And there are two primary reasons. One is the lack of specificity with regard to the definition of "moral" behavior. The other is the possible conflict with the city ordinance.
Not really difficult to understand. It may not be what you want, but this is about legalities, not moralities.
Obtuse doesn't begin to describe your repetitive posts on this thread.
Several posters have set you straight, but you remain committed to your flawed position.

Your choice.
Choices have consequences.

“animis opibusque parati”

Since: Oct 12

Location hidden

#1359 May 6, 2013
FKA Reader wrote:
<quoted text>
Eye witness?
She was asked to repent?
The parties [Board and Ms. Hale] immediately called a meeting, after which the termination of Ms. Hale was officially approved. In other words, Ms. Hale was given an opportunity to present her case and to correct her breach of contract. Obviously, she chose to remain in breach of contract, resulting in the official confirmation of termination.

“Ludibrium est onus genio”

Since: Dec 11

Planet Earth

#1360 May 6, 2013
Why doesn't the church advocate the stoning to death of adulterers in their midst?

Since: Apr 13

Columbus, OH

#1361 May 6, 2013
TonyD2 wrote:
Why doesn't the church advocate the stoning to death of adulterers in their midst?
Well, true believers look at what Jesus said about such. Those here on Topix are looing for more nails and more crosses.

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