CINCINNATI (AP) — A Catholic school teacher who was fired after she became pregnant through artificial insemination was awarded more than $170,000 today after winning her anti-discrimination lawsuit against an Ohio archdiocese.
A federal jury found that the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Cincinnati discriminated against Christa Dias by firing her in October 2010.
Dias, who taught computer classes, declined to comment immediately after the verdict but said later in a telephone interview with The Associated Press that she was "very happy and relieved."
The jury said the archdiocese should pay a total of $71,000 for back pay and compensatory damages and $100,000 in punitive damages. Dias had sued the archdiocese and two of its schools; the jury didn't find the schools liable for damages.
Dias' attorney, Robert Klingler, had argued she was fired simply because she was pregnant and unmarried, a dismissal he said violated state and federal law. He had suggested damages as high as $637,000, but Dias said she was satisfied with the jury's award.
"It was never about the money," she said. "They should have followed the law and they didn't."