DETROIT, Mich. — A graduate counseling student at Eastern Michigan University, who was expelled from the program for not affirming homosexual behavior as acceptable, has filed a federal lawsuit.
Attorneys with the Alliance Defense Fund Center for Academic Freedom said the school dismissed Julea Ward from the program because she would not agree prior to a counseling session to affirm a client’s homosexual behavior and would not retract her stance in subsequent disciplinary proceedings.
“Christian students shouldn’t be penalized for holding to their beliefs,” said ADF Senior Counsel David French. “When a public university has a prerequisite of affirming homosexual behavior as morally good in order to obtain a degree, the school is stepping over the legal line. Julea did the responsible thing and followed her supervising professor’s advice to have the client referred to a counselor who did not have a conscience issue with the very matter to be discussed in counseling.”
EMU requires students in its program to affirm or validate homosexual behavior within the context of a counseling relationship and prohibits students from advising clients that they can change their homosexual behavior.
EMU, the attorneys said, threatened Ward with expulsion if she did not agree to undergo a “remediation” so she could “see the error of her ways” and change her “belief system.”
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