July 23, 2015
Linda G. Summers, a longtime county employee in Corydon, Indiana has filed a lawsuit seeking an order preventing her boss, Harrison County Clerk Sally Whitis, from terminating her on religious grounds. In addition to punitive damages she is seeking compensation for lost wages, earning and benefits, reports WND.com.
Whitis sent an email in 2014 to all employees stating they have a “duty” to process homosexual marriage license applications. When one couple arrived in December, Summers informed her boss that she could not in good conscience process the paperwork. Later that same day she officially requested a “religious accommodation,” noting that the office had two other employees willing to process the paperwork for gay couples.
As stated in Summers’ complaint, she “has a sincerely held religious belief, based upon the [tenets] of her faith and biblical teaching, such as Leviticus 18:22; Romans 1:26-27, 1 Cor. 6:89-10; and 1 Tim. 1:9-10, that it is a sin for persons of the same sex to engage in sexual relation.” Adhering to her Christian faith, she also believes “that persons of the same sex cannot and should not be morally or legally recognized as husband and wife,” and that God will “judge individual Christians, as well as the society of which they are a part, who condone or institute same sex marriages.”
Without any warning or discussion or attempt to reach an agreement Whitis fired Summers on the spot. The complaint cites the county’s personnel handbook which prohibits religious discrimination, as well as Title VII of the Civil Rights of 1964, alleging unlawful unemployment practices.
In Kentucky a similar case is emerging as the ACLU is suing another county clerk for similarly exercising her right to practice her religion.