If my employer is a Christian youth camp,can it fire me for moving in with my boyfriend?

I do not have a contract with my employer because I was their only employee for 2 years and 1 of 3 for the past year. We have a policy and procedures handbook, which my boss and I signed, stating, we are “proud to be an equal opportunity employer. We are committed to providing equal employment opportunities to you and all other persons without regard to race, creed, color, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, citizenship status, age, veteran status or disability.” My boss knew I was moving at least a month before I did and had no problem, although now he states he didn’t know. When he told me, he called me a sinner 50 times, said I’m a liar, my boyfriend isn’t a real man and doesn’t love me, etc. Is this legal?

Asked on June 27, 2012 under Employment Labor Law, Pennsylvania


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

It probably is legal. While the law prohibits discrimination against someone because of their religion--so, for example, a secular employer could not fire a Baptist employee due to disapproval of that person's faith--it does not prohibit terminating someone because of disapproval of his/her lifestyle, so long as that lifestyle is not part of the person's religion. Moving in with your boyfriend is not required by any religion (as far as I'm aware); therefore, it would seem to be legal to terminate you for this reason.

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