Teacher In Catholic School Fired For Becoming Pregnant Wins Lawsuit Against Catholic Church
I had posted on this before, the concept of whether or not the Catholic church could legally fire a woman for getting pregnant. The teacher who worked at the Catholic school got pregnant by in vitro fertilization, and the Catholic church said that she violated her contract by essentially not acting the way a Catholic would, getting pregnant while married and through intercourse. Aside from the invasive nature of the Catholic church’s inquest into this woman’s sexual matters, as in, why would they want to know if she had intercourse in order to get pregnant, it’s stunning to me that the Catholic church actually believed that firing a woman for getting pregnant, no matter the means, was acceptable.
A federal jury found that the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Cincinnati discriminated against Christa Dias by firing her in October 2010.
Dias, who taught computer classes, declined to comment immediately after the verdict but said later in a telephone interview with The Associated Press that she was “very happy and relieved.”
The jury said the archdiocese should pay a total of $71,000 for back pay and compensatory damages and $100,000 in punitive damages. Dias had sued the archdiocese and two of its schools; the jury didn’t find the schools liable for damages.
Dias’ attorney, Robert Klingler, had argued she was fired simply because she was pregnant and unmarried, a dismissal he said violated state and federal law. He had suggested damages as high as $637,000, but Dias said she was satisfied with the jury’s award.
“It was never about the money,” she said. “They should have followed the law and they didn’t.”
Steven Goodin, the attorney for the archdiocese and the schools, had argued Dias was fired for violating her contract, which he said required her to comply with the philosophies and teachings of the Catholic church. The church considers artificial insemination immoral and a violation of church doctrine.
“We gave always argued that this case was about a contract violation and should never have been allowed to come to trial,” Goodin said after the verdict.
He said that while he was disappointed in the finding against the archdiocese, he was relieved the schools were not held liable, saying that would have proven a financial hardship for them.
Archdiocese spokesman Dan Andriacco said after court that for the archdiocese, it was always “a matter of principle” and about “an employee who broke a contract she signed.”
Dias, who is not Catholic, testified she didn’t know artificial insemination violated church doctrine or her employment pact. She said she thought the contract clause about abiding by church teachings meant she should be a Christian and follow the Bible.
What exactly does it mean to be a Christian and “follow the Bible,” as it’s interpreted. Yeesh, usually women get in trouble for having sex, not for abstaining.