Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Contact: John Becker, Director of Communications
Phone: 920-265-6023

Burlington Woman Claims Salvation Army Fired Her Because She’s Bisexual

TWO Calls on Salvation Army to Respond to Disturbing Allegations

Burlington, Vt – Just one month after the Salvation Army apologized for an Australian official who said the belief that gays must die is part of the group’s “Christian doctrine,” a former Salvation Army caseworker in Burlington, Vermont is alleging that the organization terminated her employment – which provided the sole means of support for her husband and their three-year-old daughter –  because of her sexual orientation.

Danielle Morantez, 26, claims that the Burlington Corps of the Salvation Army fired her on Monday after she raised concerns with her supervisors about sections in the Salvation Army employee handbook relating to sexual orientation and employment discrimination, coming out as bisexual in the process. At press time, neither the Burlington Corps nor the Salvation Army’s Northern New England Divisional Headquarters would agree to comment on Morantez’s claims.

“These allegations appear to be the latest disturbing chapter in the Salvation Army’s history of anti-LGBT discrimination,” said John Becker, Director of Communications for Truth Wins Out. “If it is confirmed that Ms. Morantez’s employment was terminated on the basis of her sexual orientation, this would be a huge black mark against the Salvation Army.”

“We call on the Salvation Army to respond to these troubling allegations,” added Wayne Besen, TWO’s Executive Director. “Harming someone’s family simply because that person had the courage to be true to themselves is vindictive and mean-spirited and goes against the Christian values professed by the organization.”

In a personal statement given to Truth Wins Out and posted in partnership with the Bilerico Project, an LGBT blog, Morantez noted that her employers gave her every indication that her work was exemplary, but that after the Salvation Army learned she was bisexual, they terminated her immediately and ordered her supervisors to escort her off the premises.

“I’d like the Salvation Army to explain to my three-year-old daughter how they can justify their reprehensible actions in light of the Salvation Army’s pledge to do ‘the most good,’” said Morantez. “Firing someone for being bisexual doesn’t sound like doing ‘the most good’ to me. It sounds like a tragic failure.”

Truth Wins Out is a nonprofit organization that fights anti-LGBT extremism. TWO specializes in turning information into action by organizing, advocating and fighting for LGBT equality.

Full disclosure: Ms. Morantez is a friend of the author.

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