Pregnant teacher sues for unfair dismissal

An unmarried American teacher who was sacked from a New York Catholic school for getting pregnant is suing for unfair dismissal.

Michelle McCusker said she was fired after telling the headteacher at the Diocese of Brooklyn school that she was pregnant.

“I don’t understand how a religion that prides itself on forgiving and on valuing life could terminate me because I’m pregnant and choosing to have this baby,” the 26-year-old McCusker said.

The New York Civil Liberties Union is acting on McCusker’s behalf and has filed a discrimination complaint for unfair dismissal.

A spokesman for the Diocese of Brooklyn said it was a “difficult situation” but that the school had no choice but to follow the guidelines set out in the teachers’ personnel handbook, which states that each teacher must “convey the teachings of the Catholic faith by his or her words and actions”.

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