The mission of the Connecticut Judicial Branch is to serve the interests of justice and the public by resolving matters brought before it in a fair, timely, efficient and open manner.

Employment Law Supreme Court Opinion

by Booth, George


SC19884 - Trinity Christian School v. Commission on Human Rights & Opportunities (Alleged employment discrimination by plaintiff religious institution; motion to dismiss employment discrimination complaint; interlocutory administrative appeal from defendant commission's denial of plaintiff's motion to dismiss employment discrimination complaint; "The plaintiff, Trinity Christian School, appeals from the judgment of the trial court, which dismissed the plaintiff's administrative appeal from the decision of the named defendant, the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities (commission), for lack of subject matter jurisdiction. The commission had denied the plaintiff's motion to dismiss an employment discrimination complaint brought by a former female employee, who claims that the plaintiff unlawfully terminated her employment on the basis of her sex, marital status and pregnancy, in violation of state and federal employment discrimination laws. The plaintiff appealed from that decision to the Superior Court, claiming that court had jurisdiction to entertain the plaintiff's interlocutory appeal because General Statutes § 52-571b (d), which bars the state from burdening any religious belief, immunizes religious institutions, such as the plaintiff, from employment discrimination actions, and, therefore, the plaintiff was entitled to appeal from that decision under the immunity exception to the general prohibition against such interlocutory appeals. The trial court disagreed, concluding that § 52-571b (d) is not an immunity provision, and, as a consequence, the commission's denial of the plaintiff's motion to dismiss is not an immediately appealable order. The trial court therefore granted the commission's motion to dismiss the plaintiff's administrative appeal. On appeal to this court, the plaintiff raises the same jurisdictional claim that it asserted in the trial court. We agree with the reasoning and conclusion of the trial court, and, therefore, we affirm its judgment dismissing the plaintiff's appeal.")