Woman denied job because she’s Christian?

Not likely.

At least, not completely.

This gets pretty stupid.

Just warning you.

It’s also insanely long.

The CBC has details of the story:

Bethany Paquette claims her application to work in Canada’s North for Amaruk Wilderness Corp. was rejected because she’s Christian.

“It did really hurt me and I did feel really attacked on the basis that I’m a Christian,” Paquette said.

In her complaint to the B.C. Human Rights Tribunal, Paquette outlines a series of emails from executives from Amaruk Wilderness Corp.

Paquette, an experienced river rafting guide, applied to be a wilderness guide for Amaruk’s Canadian operations in the North.

The article links to the entire correspondence between Paquette and representatives of Amaruk and quotes parts. I’ll quote, also. It really doesn’t look like the main issue in play is her Christianity specifically.

Her resume is not included in the document, nor is the original advertisement for the position, but this was their first response. At least, part of it:

job1

This perhaps could have been better worded, “Sorry you don’t quite meet the requirements we’re looking for” and ended by thanking her for her interest, but it wasn’t left at that.

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Adding statements about what he personally thinks of her school and its stance on equality is very unprofessional, and adding any digs about religion is uncalled for, no matter what she may have included in her resume or cover letter that might have triggered his desire to respond. I hope it was something specific she wrote that got him riled up, otherwise he’s just the jerk in this story.

If that were all there was to the story.

She got offended (rightly) by his tone and comments but rather than leave it alone, pray for his sins and apply for other work, she chose to write a response, the whole of which I sum up as “Oh yeah!? Well, even though I’m Canadian, I know more about Norse history than a guy from there and your Norse dudes PICKED Christiantiy so NanaNeenerBooBoo.” Ending with:

job3

And then included an attachment with statistics she put together on world religions and the number of followers for each. Why? Only she knows. We can see she focused her stats on the same-sex bits, though, because somehow this turns out to be more about that than her lack of qualifications for the position to which she originally applied. She could have argued a better case for why she was qualified rather than rise to the bait of belief bashing, but too late now.

Olaf’s next email throws evolution and biology into it (according to the CBC article, she got her degree in biology there) and..

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sigh.. What logical fallacy has he just perpetrated here? Seriously. This is not the way to handle this person. I’m impressed by his desire to gets his points across but he’s not very good at it. Maybe he should have just started sending her correspondence to the spam filter rather than try to take her on.

Olaf got his VP involved on account of the discrimination comments and rather than sort this out professionally, CD Bjørnson opted for this response to her.

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Which is annoying; not every woman in British Columbia is like this woman and it’s wrong to paint them all with the same derogatory brush. The other bit about Thor, is there anyone in Norway that prays to Thor on a daily basis and sacrifices anything to him? Comparing Thor to the Christian god isn’t very accurate. Hasn’t Thor been relegated to the mythical realm these days? Christians don’t want to think their god is simply a myth, too.

Their HR rep got the ironic last word, based on what’s available:

job6

As they’ve collectively forced their opinions on this woman..

In the CBC interview with her, it’s stated:

she resents the assumption that she would impose her beliefs on others in the workplace.

“They’d never even met me and never talked to me in person, and they just assumed all these things… and found it OK to attack me.”

I’m on her side for part of this, and on their side for part of this. Everybody behaved exactly the wrong way.

Micheal Vonn of the B.C. Civil Liberties Association said employers are not supposed to express opinions about an applicant’s religious background.

“You are allowed to think anything you like. But you have obligations as an employer to act in a non-discriminatory manner,” Vonn said.

If she seriously wasn’t qualified for the job, that’s all they should have said. That’s it. Leave their ideas and judgements about her in their heads, not display them in a flurry of emails. But this goes for her, too. She didn’t have to reply back. Write them off. Do something else with your life. Seriously.

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