EEOC rules in favor of teacher fired for giving student a Bible

seal of the EEOCA New Jersey substitute teacher won his EEOC case against a school district that fired him last January, months after he handed his Bible to a student. The incident started in October 2013 when Walt Tutka was leading a line of students and quoted Jesus’ statement about the last being first to the student who was falling behind his classmates in line.

The quote sparked questions from the student which led to ongoing conversations over a period of days, sparked by the student’s questions. Tutka eventually gave the student his Bible. When the principal found out, Tutka was read the riot act about giving out religious materials, then was fired in January 2014. The firing prompted his lawsuit.

The EEOC just released their ruling to the public although the decision was made mid-December. They concluded that Tutka’s firing was based on his religious beliefs and practices and was therefore an unjust, retaliatory dismissal which violated Tutka’s rights and the law. Tutka was represented by the Liberty Institute’s Hiram Sasser, who stated, “This is a great indication the EEOC is taking religious liberty seriously and they are going to enforce the law — and in this case make sure Walt’s rights are protected… This sends a message to school districts that their natural allergic reaction to religion is misplaced, and not only is it wrong, but it’s also an egregious violation of the law.”

The school district has not yet taken any actions to correct the situation, but Sasser has made it clear they will take further legal action should the district choose not to “do the right thing” by reinstating Tutka.

For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to shew himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him. 2 Chronicles 16:9

Whoso diggeth a pit shall fall therein: and he that rolleth a stone, it will return upon him. Proverbs 26:27

Source: Todd Starnes, EEOC: School wrong to fire teacher who gave Bible to student,, January 6, 2015.

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