Monday, December 3, 2012

Fired for What!? - 12/3/2012

Does somebody have a case of the Mondays? Well, I have the perfect cure: a Fired for What!? 2-for-1 double feature. Sidenote on "case of the Mondays" - Office Space was on television yesterday (you probably already guessed that it is a favorite of mine). Unfortunately, it was edited for television so I had to endure repeated references to "pound me into ash" prison dubbed over the original audio (you can't make this stuff up). Anyways, on with the Fired for What!?:
  • Fired for being gay - VCU women's volleyball coach, James Finley, claims he was fired for being gay. VCU denies the accusation. Federal law does not expressly prohibit sexual orientation discrimination, and a quick peak at Virginia's anti-discrimination law leads me to believe that the state law doesn't protect sexual orientation either (I don't practice in VA though - so if you know of a statute I'm missing, drop me a comment). Public universities do have additional considerations when terminating employees, however, such as due process claims, First Amendment right to speak on matters of public concern, and possibly even a crafty equal protection argument.
  • Fired for not getting a flu shot - Trihealth fired 150 employees for failing to obtain a required flu shot. The company did indicate that terminated employees could appeal the decision, but only after receiving the flu shot. This is probably lawful, but could potentially raise some accommodation issues if employees refused for religious and/or health (disability) reasons.