Employment Attorney – Generally, employers across California cannot fire an employee because of their sex. Nor can they fire an employee because she is pregnant. However, there are some exceptions for religions institutions. In the below CNN video, San Diego Christian College fired Terri James for having premarital sex.
The school may argue that the lawsuit is barred because FEHA’s definition of “employer” does not include a non-profit religious corporation. The school may also argue that James could not allege a common law wrongful termination action either in this situation, whether it is based on FEHA or the California Constitution. If the court behaves like it did in Henry v. Red Hill Evangelical Lutheran, James may be out of luck. In that case The court held that the ministerial exception to FEHA set forth in section 12926(d) of the Government Code barred the claim and that the California Constitution did not support the lawsuit either.