Anti-gay health of­fi­cial sues GA for ‘re­li­gious dis­crim­i­na­tion’

GA Voice - - Newsbriefs -

Dr. Eric Walsh, the anti-gay pas­tor who once said that gay peo­ple’s sex­u­al­ity comes from the “pits of hell,” filed a fed­eral law­suit on April 20 against the Ge­or­gia De­part­ment of Health (GDPH) for re­scind­ing a job of­fer over his con­tro­ver­sial views.

Walsh was the Pasadena Public Health Di­rec­tor in early 2014 un­til videos sur­faced of his ser­mons in which he made dis­crim­i­na­tory com­ments about LGBT peo­ple, Mus­lims, Catholics and other groups. He was put on paid ad­min­is­tra­tive leave that May and two weeks later, the GDPH hired him to lead its North Ge­or­gia Health Dis­trict, lead­ing to an up­roar from LGBT groups, HIV/AIDS or­ga­ni­za­tions, the Demo­cratic Party of Ge­or­gia and oth­ers.

The job of­fer was re­scinded within days, with GDPH spokesper­son Ryan Deal say­ing in a state­ment, “The Ge­or­gia De­part­ment of Public Health has re­tracted the con­di­tional of­fer of em­ploy­ment to Dr. Eric Walsh for the po­si­tion of Dis­trict Health Di­rec­tor of the North Ge­or­gia Health Dis­trict. Today’s ac­tion by the De­part­ment fol­lows a thor­ough ex­am­i­na­tion of Dr. Walsh’s cre­den­tials and back­ground as well as con­sul­ta­tion with the six lo­cal Boards of Health which com­prise the dis­trict.” Walsh later filed an EEOC com­plaint against the GDPH.

The First Lib­erty In­sti­tute, which is rep­re­sent­ing Walsh in the fed­eral law­suit along with At­lanta law firm Parks, Ch­esin & Wal­bert, re­leased a state­ment say­ing Walsh has been un­able to get a job in public health since then.

Via the AJC: “I couldn’t be­lieve they fired me be­cause of things I talked about in my ser­mons,” Walsh said. “It was dev­as­tat­ing.”

GA State study: Trans stu­dents’ sui­cide risk sig­nif­i­cantly higher when de­nied bath­room ac­cess

Dr. Eric Walsh has filed a fed­eral law­suit against the Ge­or­gia De­part­ment of Public Health af­ter his job of­fer was re­scinded due to anti-LGBT com­ments. (File photo)

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