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Christian Gov’t Employee Suspended For Not Watching Gay Training Video

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Amber Randall Civil Rights Reporter

An Illinois Social Security worker might get fired after refusing multiple times to watch a gay diversity training video.

David Hall, who works at the Social Security Administration office in Champaign, Illinois, faced a two-day suspension after declining to watch a video about creating an inclusive workplace, reports the Huffington Post.

A supervisor told Hall twice, once on June 2 and once on June 24, that he needed to watch the training video. Hall declined both times, saying that his religious beliefs prevented him from doing so. He requested a religious exemption, as well.

Hall received an official reprimand and was placed on a two-day suspension without pay. Hall said he expects to be fired over his stance, according to Illinois Homepage.

Hall argued the video advocated “an agenda and a lifestyle that I simply don’t agree with,” and pointed out that videos geared toward ethnic groups aren’t shown.

“We have never done that for another particular class of people. We haven’t done it for veterans, the disabled, blacks, Hispanics, or anything else,” Hall said to WCIA.

The video serves to teach employees how to provide better customer service and how to be more inclusive, according to the Social Security office.

“The training includes a brief session on tips for increasing cultural awareness in a diverse and inclusive environment,” a Social Security statement read.

Hall alleged that his supervisor threatened a longer suspension if he does not watch the video.

“This is something I want to fight and expose, to give other Christians the courage of their convictions,” Hall told the News Gazette.

Hall has since hired lawyer Jason Craddock. Craddock previously represented the owner of the TimberCreek Bed & Breakfast, who refused a same-sex marriage ceremony on his property.

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