The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission has filed a federal lawsuit against a doctor in Texas who required all employees to attend daily meetings where they read the Bible and discussed how to apply the lessons to their daily lives, then retaliated against or fired anyone who objected to it.
The EEOC sued Dr. Tim Shepherd, of Lewisville, on behalf of former employees Almeda Gibson, Courtney Maldonado, Stacy O’Laughlin and Joshua Stoner. It claims Gibson, a Buddhist, made repeated requests for religious accommodation that were denied and that her requests to be excused from the religious portion of the required meetings were ignored.
“These meetings typically began each workday morning with a reading or study of Biblical verses and principles and included a discussion of how the religious principles could be related or applied to the personal lives of the employees,” the 9-page complaint states. “These mandatory meetings were usually led by the business owners, Dr. Timothy Shepherd or his wife Virginia Shepherd.”The EEOC says Maldonado was “transferred” from clinical supervisor to medical assistant after she told the Shepherds that “she believed it was wrong to require employees to attend meetings at which a specific religion is discussed in such detail.” She was transferred to the new job a week later.
“The day after Ms. Maldonado’s transfer, the Shepherds called a meeting with Ms. Maldonado and the employees she had supervised as clinical supervisor and told the group that Ms. Maldonado had been removed from that position because she was not leading them property, was not following Christ, and was not seeing the Shepherd’s vision,” the complaint states.
Yeah, see, you don’t get to do that. It’s illegal, and it should be. According to the complaint, they also fired a woman for being a single mother because that’s “not what God wanted” her to do. And fired a male employee because he was living with his girlfriend without being buried. Why is it so difficult for people to understand that this is none of their business? You don’t get to dictate to your employees what religious beliefs or values they have to have in order to work for you. Now cue the cries of Christian persecution in 3…2…1…