Just ran into my first case of blatant discrimination. I was applying for a job helping resettle refugees in the United States. I was excited to apply since I'm quite qualified for the position and it's always been something I wanted to do. There was a mention that I had to be able to work with "colleagues, resettlement partners, volunteers and Churches in the local community" but in my experience this shouldn't be any sort of problem since many people in churches are doing some amazing humanitarian work around the world.

But, at the very end of the application was a "test" asking if I agreed with "values" such as "The Example of Jesus as we serve those who are suffering from poverty and injustice, regardless of color, belief, or gender, as part of God’s plan to redeem, reconcile, and restore the world. We seek to follow Jesus by living holy, humble, and honest lives individually and corporately." And other such garbage that had completely been neglected from the detail in their job posting which was grounded in reality. If they would have just said "We seek to live humble and honest lives individually and corporately" I would have been all about that, but that sentence was just a few key words too long.

A little research with a friend showed quickly that this is a federally funded organization which has a history of only hiring people who believe in Jesus. It was quite obvious on their website, not not at all in the job posting I was replying to.

So, I clicked the button that said No, I do not agree with their values, thus promising that I will not get the job. Thankfully there was a box that allowed me to explain my values, in which I typed:

In my studies and experience with the international community, I have seen that the best way to interact with people from other ethnicities is to respect the fact that they come from a diverse range of cultures, languages, and faiths. I feel my successes within people from beliefs different than my own are due to focusing on human compassion and morality rather than on religious belief systems. In this position I would not limit myself to helping people of just one faith, but rather helping people because it is the right thing to do. As World Relief is a federally funded organization, I am sure you must agree.

Anyway, a job like this probably requires me to hand out bibles and pray for people, demanding that they convert to Xianity if they want to receive help. As far as I am concerned, refugees have suffered enough and need all the help they can get...this type "help" only makes things worse.

So that's a job I won't be getting. I'd feel differently if they had been honest in their job posting, perhaps saying that "only people who believe a 2,000 year-old zombie Jew will be returning need apply." Still, I'm in a bit of a mood now as this was the first overt case of discrimination that has occurred to me as an atheist.

Views: 115

Tags: discrimination, federal, funding, organization, refugees, religious

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Comment by Dogly on December 27, 2011 at 8:40am

Bigots will never give up their bigotry.  They must be forced to obey federal law.  I hate that, "Get down on your knees, and I'll give you a piece of bread."  

Comment by Scott A. Hunt on December 27, 2011 at 8:39am

If you do get a response, I'd be interested in seeing it.  It s huge gripe of mine that religious charity groups can't do good things without using it to spread the word. 

Comment by mistercliff on December 27, 2011 at 8:17am

@Scott A. Hunt, I sent an email off to them this afternoon, but it looks like this company is well known for this sort of thing so they've probably already tackled the issue if they're going to.

Comment by Scott A. Hunt on December 27, 2011 at 7:09am

If they are federally funded, why not take this to the FFRF?

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