Skip to comments.Furor over gay teacherís firing may pit city of Columbus against Roman Catholic diocese
Posted on 04/24/2013 7:34:41 PM PDT by SeekAndFind
COLUMBUS, OH, April 22, 2013 (LifeSiteNews) The firing of a teacher at Bishop Watterson Catholic High School after it was learned she was involved in a long-term homosexual relationship may pit the Catholic diocese against a Columbus city ordinance barring employers from discriminating based on sexuality.
Gym instructor Carla Hale, 57, was fired last week after an anonymous parent wrote the Diocese of Columbus to complain because in an obituary for Hales mother, Hale was listed as a survivor alongside her longtime lesbian partner, Julie.
Hale signed a morality clause as part of her contract, affirming that Catholic school personnel are expected to be examples of moral behavior and professionalism, and acknowledging her employment could be terminated for immorality or serious unethical conduct. Because the Roman Catholic Church holds homosexual behavior to be gravely immoral, the Diocese of Columbus found her to be in violation of her contract, and fired her.
Now, Hale wants her job back. She has filed a grievance with the teachers union, and her lawyer, Thomas Tootle, told the Columbus Dispatch that if Hales union grievance does not succeed, her next step will be to sue under the citys anti-discrimination law.
That means the diocesan officials who fired Hale may soon face legal action from the city of Columbus, fines, and possibly even jail time.
Columbus city law deems it a misdemeanor for an employer to discriminate against an employee based on sexual preference. It is also illegal for employers to have policies that discriminate based on sexual preference. There is no exemption for religious organizations or other employers who object to homosexuality on religious grounds. A guilty verdict carries penalties of up to 180 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.
The Diocese of Columbus refused to comment on the case, citing the confidentiality of personnel matters.
Hales is the latest in a series of firings of Catholic school teachers who have publicly opposed Church teaching on homosexuality. Another Ohio Catholic high school teacher, Mike Moroski of Cincinnati, was let go in February after posting on his blog that he supports same-sex marriage. Rather than fight the diocese, Morski launched a political career. Al Fischer, an openly homosexual music teacher in St. Louis, was fired from a Catholic school and church last year after announcing he was traveling to New York to marry his same-sex partner.
Although none of those cases resulted in legal action, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled in January that religious employees of religious organizations cannot sue for employment discrimination. The Court defined religious employees as employees of religious organizations who have religious teaching authority. Catholic school teachers seem likely to fall under this category, especially those who sign morality clauses promising to uphold the faith.
As of this writing, more than 40,000 people have signed an online petition demanding the Diocese of Columbus reinstate Hales employment and issue a public apology.
This is an example of how YOU HAVE TO LEGISLATE MORALITY.
The State will have to determine which morality it will stand up for — Traditional Christian morality or Modern Secular morality.
The state cannot stay neutral on this issue.
Wait — the girl’s gym teacher is a lesbian? Shocking!
You can be fired for being gay in any state if you work for a religious institution, particularly if you sign a morals clause. She did both.
The SCOTUS has already ruled on this 9-0.
Is it true that all female physical education teachers are gay? My school district has several, and they are militant. They also get to teach health.
OK, here’s a question — What if the state recognizes gay marriage?
Can the state COERCE the Catholic institution to re-instate a fired “married” lesbian teacher for what the state recognizes as LEGAL?
Sue the city back into the stone age.
This could be an interesting case if the teachers lawyer asks the diocese to prove ongoing homosexual activity. As I understand it, the church opposes homosexual acts, not homosexuality per se. Sadly many fifty-seven year old heterosexual couples exist in marriages without sex. It’s possible this couple does too.
I think self-identified homosexual partnership suffices to violate the morality clause.
Nice try but no cigar. (The lesbos can probably put it to good use.)
Ohio doesn’t recognize such “marriages” and neither do 40 other states.
LOL - It fit her perfect!
That’s a female?
I want proof! Oh wait, never mind...
If you've seen one queer lesbian gym teacher, you've seen them all.
Shoot! I thought that was SEAN PENN.
For you non-readers of James Joyce (can't really say I blame you), that stands for "Kiss My Royal Irish A***."
On second thought, now that I've seen the photo, please don't.
The last time the Church allowed homosexuals to hang around without being fired they ended up getting sued for it.
Lemme guess, she would be the dyke in her "relationship"?
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.