PORTLAND, Oregon (CNS): A US archdiocese said it would “vigorously defend” itself against a lawsuit claiming unlawful discrimination at a Catholic school.
The suit, filed by a lesbian couple, “is believed to be totally without merit”, said a July 28 statement on behalf of Portland archdiocese in Oregon .
Last year, O’Hara Catholic School in Eugene withheld admission from a preschooler who is being raised by a lesbian couple, Lee Inkmann and Trish Wilson. The pair said their lifestyle was the reason Inkmann’s daughter was not admitted to O’Hara.
The pair filed a suit on July 28 against the school and St Mary Parish, saying the admission decision violated the Eugene city code banning discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and state law that blocks discrimination because of marital status.
The claim is seeking up to $550,000 in damages for loss of educational opportunity and “severe emotional distress, humiliation, anxiety, depression and damage to their reputations”.
The suit contains “numerous false statements of fact”, said archdiocesan spokesman Bud Bunce.