The fate of a man who worked as a management analyst for the Library of Congress up until the beginning of this month will soon be decided by the Equal Employment Opportunity Complaints Office. Peter TerVeer claims he was not only harassed but fired because of his sexual orientation.
WJLA reports TerVeer, 30, filed a discrimination complaint, which states his former employer "...wanted to educate me on hell” and "..he hoped I had repented because the bible was very clear on what God does to homosexuals." Emails confirm this was the case. Here's what they said according to the local ABC affiliate in the DC metro area:
An email sent to TerVeer from his boss in June 2009 states: "Putting you closer to God is my effort to encourage you to save your worldly behinds!"
In another email, two months later, TerVeer's boss wrote: "Jesus prohibited sexual immorality including homosexuality, adultery and pre-marital sex."
Watch the WJLA report for more:
TerVeer says all this started when his manager John Mech had seen TerVeer "liked" a page called "Two Dads" on Facebook a few years ago, MSNBC reports. After all this stress at work, TerVeer says his therapist suggested he take a month of medical leave, which he got approved from his employer before doing so. After coming back from 37 days off recently, he found he no longer had the job. He had been fired.
TerVeer filed his complaint with the Library of Congress’ Equal Employment Opportunity Complaints Office, which will decide on his case next month. From there, MSNBC reports he can take his case to the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. According to MSNBC, TerVeer's attorney said discrimination based on his sexual orientation is part of the case but also religious bias.
Prior to finding out he was gay, TerVeer said he had a good relationship with his boss and received "exemplary" performance reviews, according to ABC News:
"He stated that as a homosexual I could never succeed because it was against God's law," TerVeer said in a March 13 affidavit provided to ABC News.
Four days later, the two discussed TerVeer's annual performance review. "My ratings were lower than they should have been," said TerVeer, and he questioned whether his supervisor's religious beliefs resulted in "wrongful discrimination" in grading his performance. In his affidavit,TerVeer said his supervisor became "extremely upset and vehemently denied that my homosexuality and his personal views had an impact on his ratings of me."
"He accused me of attempting to injure his career and reputation and to 'bring down the Library,' TerVeer said, and that his supervisor retaliated against him following that review.
MSNBC points out that whatever the outcome of this case may be, it is further evidence that employees need to be careful when mixing social media with work.
Featured image by Lage Carlson via ABC News.