Summarized by Kent Larsen
Jury Says Man Was Fired Because He's Mormon
Salt Lake Tribune 29Mar00 D2
OKANOGAN, WASHINGTON -- An Okanogan County, Washington jury ruled
March 16th that Mid-Valley Hospital in Omak, Washington had
discriminated against LDS Church member Lorin MacKay because he was
Mormon. The jury awarded $200,000 to MacKay covering economic and
emotional damages in his dismissal. The hospital maintains that
MacKay was fired because he was spending too much time as an LDS
MacKay was hired by the hospital in 1988 and was called as bishop of
the Omak Ward in 1989. He says that, "The board in executive session
gave me an ultimatum -- either be a bishop or be an administrator."
According to MacKay, three of the five board members didn't like the
level of his involvement with the Church, so he was fired.
The hospital maintains that MacKay's performance, not his religion,
led to his termination. He was unable to obtain employment for
several years, presumably because of poor recommendations from
Mid-Valley Hospital, "I'm just now starting my career all over," says
MacKay, who is now administrator of the Teton Medical Center in
The hospital is considering an appeal of the award.