Space News
space history and artifacts articles

Messages
space history discussion forums

Sightings
worldwide astronaut appearances

Resources
selected space history documents

Websites
related space history websites

  collectSPACE: Messages
  Space Explorers & Workers
  JPL worker sues over 'intelligent design' firing

Post New Topic  Post A Reply
profile | register | preferences | faq | search

next newest topic | next oldest topic
Author Topic:   JPL worker sues over 'intelligent design' firing
music_space
Member

Posts: 1050
From: Canada
Registered: Jul 2001

posted 03-14-2012 09:05 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for music_space   Click Here to Email music_space     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
The Associated Press reports about ex-NASA employee David Coppedge's lawsuit against the space agency.
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory has landed robotic explorers on the surface of Mars, sent probes to outer planets and operates a worldwide network of antennas that communicates with interplanetary spacecraft.

Its latest mission is defending itself in a workplace lawsuit filed by a former computer specialist who claims he was demoted — and then let go — for promoting his views on intelligent design, the belief that a higher power must have had a hand in creation because life is too complex to have developed through evolution alone.

David Coppedge, who worked as a "team lead" on the Cassini mission exploring Saturn and its many moons, alleges that he was discriminated against because he engaged his co-workers in conversations about intelligent design and handed out DVDs on the idea while at work. Coppedge lost his team lead title in 2009 and was let go last year after 15 years on the mission.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 03-14-2012 09:14 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
As noted in the article, the National Center for Science Education (which describes itself as a "not-for-profit, membership organization providing information and resources for schools, parents and concerned citizens working to keep evolution and climate science in public school science education") is maintaining an online archive of this lawsuit's legal filings and papers.

garymilgrom
Member

Posts: 1571
From: Atlanta, GA, USA
Registered: Feb 2007

posted 03-14-2012 11:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for garymilgrom   Click Here to Email garymilgrom     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
It seems to me that Mr. Coppedge is confusing freedom of religion (the freedom to practice any or no religion) with the freedom to disseminate religious information.

While this country protects the first item above, at every job I've ever had, dissemination of religion or your personal religious beliefs was not allowed on the premises. If you try to convince others that your religion is the "one true way", and handing out religious DVDs certainly falls into that area, then you are violating the rights of the people you are talking to and should be disciplined.

I'm with JPL on this one.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 03-14-2012 12:05 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by garymilgrom:
I'm with JPL on this one.
JPL is saying that while Coppedge received a disciplinary warning (later rescinded) and his informal lead designation was removed due to his engaging in religious speech at work, his layoff had nothing to do with his rights or religious freedoms.

Rather, in the fall of 2010, Cassini moved into its second extended mission, which resulted in a "long-anticipated" 50 percent budget reduction and layoffs. Coppedge was among 200 employees that the laboratory laid off as a result.

Robert Pearlman
Editor

Posts: 27328
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 01-18-2013 11:40 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
David Coppedge has lost his wrongful termination lawsuit, the Pasadena Star-News reports.
In a court decision signed by Judge Ernest Hiroshige, the court said Coppedge's claim of discrimination and wrongful termination "fails, and judgment on this claim shall be entered in favor of Caltech."

...during the civil trial, attorneys for JPL painted Coppedge as a difficult employee who pushed his views upon his co-workers. JPL said Coppedge's layoff was in line with agency policy.

The court agreed.

"The evidence shows that Caltech has a detailed layoff policy, incorporating a layoff ranking process, which (Coppedge's supervisor) carried out. The evidence clearly shows that (Coppedge's co-workers) were more qualified than Coppedge regarding the skills needed on the project going forward, such as SCO/ITL, web servers, and Linux, and that Coppedge had a history of poor customer relationships, particularly in comparison to the other System Administrators," the judgement said.

All times are CT (US)

next newest topic | next oldest topic

Administrative Options: Close Topic | Archive/Move | Delete Topic
Post New Topic  Post A Reply
Hop to:

Contact Us | The Source for Space History & Artifacts

Copyright 1999-2012 collectSPACE.com All rights reserved.


Ultimate Bulletin Board 5.47a





advertisement