San Diego Christian College has fired one of its employees because she got pregnant outside of marriage.
Teri James, a 29-year-old staff member in the school’s financial aid department, is claiming that SDCC fired her due to discrimination because she was pregnant.
The school, however, claims that James, like all employees and students, had signed a code of conduct that requires “no sexual activity be engaged in outside of marriage,” and so they fired James because she violated the rules in the code of conduct.
James has hired Gloria Allred to represent her in the suit. Allred said in a press conference Thursday that the college should be considered a business and cannot fire someone because they got pregnant.
The college has not commented on the matter, but it will likely be up for debate if the college can require its employees to maintain a standard of conduct outside of work hours and college grounds.
Many Christian colleges’ handbook have similar clauses that state marriage is a sacred bond between a man and a woman and sexual acts are not permitted outside of marriage. Regulating those rules and standards, however, is also up for debate. If pregnancy is their only way to determine extramarital sex and a broken code of conduct, then the regulation is drastically unfair towards women, which is likely a point Allred will bring up during the suit.
James admitted that she did sign the document, but also claims the college has failed in their Christian duty of compassion.
“I feel like what San Diego Christian College did to me was hurtful and un-Christ like,' she said during Thursday’s press conference. “I was unmarried, pregnant and they took away my livelihood.”