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Church eliminating teaching position Oregon

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  • Church eliminating teaching position Oregon

    Hello,

    I have been teaching for a church/school for over 35 years and I was told today that my position is up in the air for the next school year. It comes down to myself or another coworker and they haven't decided which to eliminate yet because enrollment is down for next year and they can't afford both of us. Does anyone know if I am eligible for UI benefits? Are they allowed to force me into retirement? I turn 65 this summer but can not afford to retire for another year. I am quite concerned that I am being treated unfairly and targeted because of my age.

    Please, any advice or references to outside websites regarding this issue will be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you!

  • #2
    NOT my area of expertise, but I can give you a partial answer to one of your questions. Not all churchs are in the UI system, and different states could in theory have somewhat different rules. The fastest way to find out is to ask whoever does your payroll. If they have been including your name/SSN on their quarterly wage filings and paying SUTA/FUTA taxes on you, then you are potentially eligible for UI (if otherwise applicable). I have never had a reason to get expert on church related employment. I know that there is a church exception in the UI system, and I have heard that it became optional (as opposed to the previous "no participation"). But this is something that I really have never researched.

    Your second question is an ADEA question (Age Discrimination in Employment Act), which is also not my area of expertise. If you read the following article, you will know more then I do on the subject. There are other responders who are more familiar with this law then I am.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_Dis...Employment_Act
    "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away".
    Philip K. **** (1928-1982)

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    • #3
      How are they forcing you to retire? You could look for another position.
      I don't respond to Private Messages unless the moderator specifically refers you to me for that purpose. Thank you.

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      • #4
        The issue of teachers in religiously run schools and the application of federal anti-discrimination laws is currently pending before the Supreme Court. As such, it is hard to advise whether or not these laws even apply to you. Many of the laws do not apply to those who work for religious institutions as the government can not legislate religious doctrine. For example, no court can force the Catholic Church to hire a female priest. That line blurs a bit when it comes to those who work for religious organizations in other capacities.

        That said, it would only be illegal if the reason you were not chosen was because of your age (or legally protrected charcteristic). If they chose the other teacher for their expertise, performance, salary, personal preference of the principal, or other such reasons, it would not be a violation of ADEA even though you are older.

        I'm not sure how you can be forced into retirement though. That would still be a choice. As Patty said, you could always seek other employment. 65 is certainly not too old to work.
        I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

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        • #5
          65 is certainly not too old to work.
          No, it's legally not too old to work, but it sure is hard to find work out there these days, especially if you're not young, attractive and full of energy. Especially if you're trained in a profession that has many younger people applying. I've come back to my unpleasant profession twice, involuntarily, because I just couldn't get hired anywhere else, despite all of my skills. And I'm only 52, look at least 10 years younger, have a law degree, can fix just about any computer and build one as well... The reality could be that she would be forced to retire. Of course, AFTER she's used all of her unemployment.
          I am not an attorney, and don't play one on TV. Any information given is a description only and should be verified by your attorney.

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          • #6
            Agree with Alice. The OP is saying she may be forced to "retire" from her current
            job/position. It's not that easy to find another job, particularly at age 65.
            Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

            Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

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            • #7
              FYI, my mother successfully changed jobs twice when she was over 60 until she finally decided to retire. It can be done.
              The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Alice Dodd View Post
                No, it's legally not too old to work, but it sure is hard to find work out there these days, especially if you're not young, attractive and full of energy. Especially if you're trained in a profession that has many younger people applying. I've come back to my unpleasant profession twice, involuntarily, because I just couldn't get hired anywhere else, despite all of my skills. And I'm only 52, look at least 10 years younger, have a law degree, can fix just about any computer and build one as well... The reality could be that she would be forced to retire. Of course, AFTER she's used all of her unemployment.
                Uh, Alice? Are you single and willing to put up with ??? Never mind.

                Only by going to the local Unemployment Office can Skimmer find out if she qualifies for unemployment. As for a age discrimination suit? Not likely as any future job offer or written notice of no longer needing services would be carefully worded to avoid this possibility.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by cbg View Post
                  FYI, my mother successfully changed jobs twice when she was over 60 until she finally decided to retire. It can be done.
                  We didn't say it couldn't be done - just that it would be hard. It's hard for lots of
                  people in this current economy to find a job & generally even harder for someone 65.
                  Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

                  Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

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                  • #10
                    Acknowledged - but I didn't want the poster to be too discouraged to try, either.
                    The above answer, whatever it is, assumes that no legally binding and enforceable contract or CBA says otherwise. If it does, then the terms of the contract or CBA apply.

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                    • #11
                      My aunt retired from teaching and is in her 60's but has continued to work. Sometimes those in the education field tend to have tunnel vision and think they can only ever teach the grade level they are used to in a formal classroom. It can be true in other fields but I have seen it much more prevalent in education. Meanwhile there are many centers out there which need tutors, and even families looking to hire tutors. Look into adult ed programs or local colleges which might have child devlopment courses or centers. My aunt now teaches English and reading skills to those who are incarerated and in low income housing. Her years of experience and even her age were a huge bonus as it gave her more credibility with her clients/students than she have waltzing in as a 25 year old.

                      Look and see if the public schools are hiring. Even if you don't qualify for a teaching certificate, you probably qualify to substitute teach. Most of our best subs are former teachers. There are also numerous other positions such as instructional assistants and central office positions which would utilize your skills but not require certification.
                      I post with the full knowledge and support of my employer, though the opinions rendered are my own and not necessarily representative of their position. In other words, I'm a free agent.

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                      • #12
                        OP, maybe you will not be the one let go & will not have to worry about
                        finding other employment.
                        Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. Leo Buscaglia

                        Live in peace with animals. Animals bring love to our hearts and warmth to our souls.

                        Comment

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