Ex-employee of San Antonio Federal Credit Union starts petition, alleges gays can’t use restrooms

Posted on 04 Apr 2012 at 5:27pm

A former employee of San Antonio Federal Credit Union started an online petition Tuesday that alleges the company prohibits its gay employees from using the unisex bathrooms. Instead, the petition states gay employees must use the restrooms in the lobby.

The petition on Change.org entitled “Stop the discriminatory treatment of gay employees at San Antonio Federal Credit Union,” also states that gay employees are not allowed to discuss their families, as their straight co-workers can.

SACU was started in 1935 and was federally charted in 1989, according to the website. About 700 employees work at 18 branches in San Antonio and one branch in Houston.

SACU spokeswoman Paige Ramsey-Palmer told Instant Tea on Wednesday that the company doesn’t discriminate based on sexual orientation.

“We totally disagree and we respectfully disagree with the allegations,” she said. “We are an equal opportunity and affirmative action employer and because of this we take these allegations very seriously.”

The company’s website states that it “does not discriminate against qualified applicants or employees on account of race, color, sex, age, national origin, physical or mental disability, religion, or other protected categories under federal and state laws, regulations and local ordinances.”

Ramsey-Palmer later wrote in an email that “In practice, SACU does not allow discrimination based on sexual orientation, and sexual orientation is included with the wording ‘any other category protected by state or federal laws or local ordinances’”

She said no complaints had been made in reference to gay employees not being able to use the employee restroom and that SACU welcomes “the opportunity to address these issues through official channels.” She stated the creator of the petition was a former employee.

Petition creator Keith Crabtree didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment, but he wrote on the website that the petition averaged two signatures per hour in the first day. It has reached almost 200 signatures.

He is petitioning the state House and SACU assistant vice president.

Below is the Crabtree’s petition letter:

Stop the discriminatory treatment of gay employees at San Antonio Federal Credit Union.

Currently, employees of San Antonio Federal Credit Union who are gay are not allowed to use the unisex employee restrooms at SAFCU branches; instead being told to use restrooms in the lobby. SAFCU also prohibits gay employees from mentioning their families at work, while heterosexual families are allowed to discuss their families freely at work. This is important because all employees should be entitled to equal treatment and should be treated with dignity and respect — regardless of their sexual orientation. A whistleblower reported these discriminatory practices to the Human Resources Department and was terminated for doing so. Please sign this important petition and demand that SAFCU stop these discriminatory practices.

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