Fired Because You Are Gay? Former Catholic High School Teacher Files Wrongful Termination Lawsuit

According to the San Gabriel Valley Tribune, a former Catholic high school teacher who said he was fired from his job for marrying his gay husband is suing his former employer.

The paper reported that former St. Lucy’s Priory High School English teacher Kenneth Bencomo filed a lawsuit last month in Los Angeles Superior Court. He claims that he was wrongfully terminated and seeks damages for violation of public policy, violation of the state Labor Code and breach of contract.

Bencomo’s firing violates the constitutionally protected right of a person to marry and to engage in political activities, including political speech, according to the lawsuit.

According to the Valley Tribune, Bencomo and his partner, Christopher Persky, met in April 2003. They wed last June, after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling cleared the way for gay weddings to resume in California for the first time since 2008. He was fired less than two weeks later by the school.

Bencomo began working for the school in 1998 and his sexual preferences were common knowledge, according to the lawsuit. News of the wedding appeared in a local newspaper, although his affiliation with the school was not mentioned. The suit states an administrator told him he was being fired even though she considered him an “exceptional” teacher, according to the Valley Tribune.

I Was Fired Because of My Sexual Orientation

Nationally, workplace discrimination based on gender, race, religion, national origin and family status is unlawful. In addition, California state law also provides further protections against workplace discrimination based upon a person’s gender identity and/or sexual orientation.

If a person loses his or her job due to his or her sexual orientation, he or she can pursue a wrongful termination case against a former employer. Contact our office today to have your situation reviewed by qualified legal counsel. Ensure that your rights are respected.

If you have suffered workplace discrimination, we can help. Call our office today to schedule a consultation at (310) 273-3180.

Kesluk, Silverstein & Jacob—Los Angeles discrimination attorneys

Did You Know? Under the California Fair Employment and Housing Act (FEHA), discrimination at work based on sexual orientation is prohibited.