Saturday, July 11, 2015

Ireland Moves to Protect Gay Teachers in Religious Run Schools

In a move that needs to replicated in the United States, Ireland is moving forward legislation that would grant employment protections to gay, lesbian and bi-sexual teachers even in schools run by religious institutions.  The move is yet another resounding slap in the face to the Roman Catholic Church which for decades - if not centuries - put protecting predators and sadist above protecting children.   Here in America, such religious affiliated schools typically enjoy tax-exempt status and in some instances receive state funds.  To continue to receive these benefit - which I personally would like to see eliminated all together - at a minimum the simple quid pro quo is that such institutions should be required to apply non-discrimination policies to all teachers, gay or straight.  Sadly, it will not happen any time soon give the GOP's self-prostitution to the "godly folk" best known for hatred towards others and wearing ignorance as a badge of honor.  But back to Ireland.  Here are details from The Advocate:

Ireland’s government this week passed an amendment to the Employment Equality Act that would allow LGB employees working in religious-run organizations, such as schools and hospitals, to be out at work without fear of being fired, according to Irish LGBT site The Out Most.

The bill, which on Tuesday passed the first half of the two-chamber Irish legislature, the Seanad, still has to still pass the final stage in the Dáil before it can become law.

Leaders of the INTO LGBT Teachers’ Group cheered the amendment, telling reporters it will have a hugely positive effect on gay, lesbian, and bisexual teachers.

“LGB teachers can be secure in the knowledge that speaking about our families and our relationships, in the same way as our colleagues, and that being gay or lesbian will have no bearing on job security or on prospects for promotion,” said Anne Marie Lillis, the chairwoman of the INTO LGBT Teachers’ Group. “When signed into law this legislation will end the threat of discrimination in primary schools based on sexual orientation.”

Minister of State for Equality Aodhán Ó Ríordáin promised his offices are "working hard" to ensure the measure is enacted before the new school year begins in September. Gay and lesbian workers in other professions have had legal protections from discrimination since the 1990s.  

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