Spencer v. World Vision

633 F.3d 723 (2011)

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Spencer v. World Vision

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
633 F.3d 723 (2011)

Facts

World Vision, Inc. (WVI) (defendant) was a Christian-based, nonprofit, international humanitarian-aid organization that worked with children and their families. WVI’s professed purpose was to serve God by caring for children in need, practicing evangelism, strengthening Christian leadership, and educating Americans about world suffering. Sylvia Spencer, Ted Youngberg, and Vicki Hulse (the employees) (plaintiffs) were employees of WVI who were fired because their religious beliefs differed from WVI’s. The employees sued WVI for violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibited religious discrimination by employers. WVI denied the allegations, asserting that it was entitled to an exemption from Title VII because it was a religious organization. The employees claimed that WVI was not a religious organization because its humanitarian efforts were not provided solely to those of the same religious beliefs.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Per curiam)

Concurrence (Kleinfeld, J.)

Concurrence (O’Scannlain, J.)

Dissent (Berzon, J.)

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