“I really enjoyed the colleagues and the relationships with the students, but in January of this year the school fired me. And they fired me because I’m gay.”
A teacher publicly called on Prime Minister Scott Morrison to do more to ensure protection for LGBTIQ teachers and students under the new religious discrimination bill, saying she lost her job because of her sexuality.
The new bill was introduced in parliament on Thursday and aims to protect Australians who “make statements of belief” against discrimination laws currently in force at the state level. While there is a caveat that prohibits statements that “threaten, intimidate, harass or defame any person or group,” many fear the bill does not go far enough to protect the LGBTIQ community from hate. targeted and unfair treatment under the guise of religious beliefs. .
In Thursday’s episode of Q + AAudience member Stephanie Lentz claimed she was fired from her job as an English teacher at a Christian school in Sydney earlier this year after coming out. Lentz, who is part of the LGBTIQ community and a member of the Anglican faith, did not say which school she was allegedly expelled from.
“I worked at a Christian school teaching English from 2017 to 2019 and loved it,” Lentz said. “I really enjoyed the colleagues and the relationships with the students, but in January of this year the school fired me. And they fired me for being gay.
She added that the school did not believe that she could maintain her religious faith and embrace her sexuality. “They fired me because they disagreed with me that you can be a Christian and also live faithfully the biological realities of your sexuality or your gender,” she said.
Lentz also clarified that she had no problem teaching religious content in the school. “I had offered to promote the school’s ethics in matters of sexuality,” she said. “Obviously, despite the things that I thought were harmful to the students, but I offered to support the school’s position on a lot of things.