Jurors Rule Against Fired Unwed Pregnant Missouri Teacher

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Jurors have ruled against a teacher who alleged that she was fired from a Catholic school in Kansas City, Missouri, because she was pregnant, unmarried and refused to have an abortion.

Jurors sided Wednesday with the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, which said St. Therese School teacher Michelle Bolen was let go in 2015 because of poor performance. Bolen testified that a priest told her that had she terminated her pregnancy, the school would not have to deal with the “scandal” of a pregnant, unmarried teacher.

Her attorney, E. E. Keenan, says state law exempts churches from being sued for pregnancy discrimination. Instead he argued that the diocese violated a state law that protects women from being fired for refusing to have an abortion.