Monday, February 3, 2014

MA Catholic School Rescinds Job Offer to a Gay Man - Claims Harassment

Matthew Barrett was offered a job in July as the food services director at Fontbonne Academy, a Catholic all-girls prep school. The principal of the school rescinded the offer two days later after the Barrett identified his husband as his emergency contact.

According to Barrett, “She said the Catholic religion doesn’t recognize same-sex marriage, and that was her excuse. It just ate me up. I had all the qualifications and that was the job for me.”

The legal issues in this case are complex. The Supreme Court ruling in the 2012 Hosanna-Tabor case gave some latitude to religious schools. However, that opinion is limited to federal law and it involved the appointment of a minister. In this case, the issue clearly involves a secular position having no religious responsibilities.

Not surprisingly, the headline at Catholic Education Daily is “Catholic School Harassed for Denying Job to Man in Same-Sex Marriage.” The so-called harassment is because the Boston offices of Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders, filed Barrett's complaint with the Massachusetts Commission against Discrimination.

According to the school's website, the admit students without regard to religion. A couple of positions are posted on the employment section. They list no requirement even to be a Catholic. They do not post a separate EEO policy.

Irrespective of the legal requirements, this leads us to ask the usual questions; Do they hire people who are divorced? Suppose the contact was a woman identified as "companion?" Has anyone in their employ ever had an abortion? Do any of the women use contraceptives? It just seems that these matters are always focused exclusively on LGBT people. It's an obsession!
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