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Phillips Esq.
Phillips Esq., Attorney-at-Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 17165
Experience:  B.A.; M.B.A.; J.D.
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I am 64, female, disabled through the federal government, and

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I am 64, female, disabled through the federal government, and have had a history of depression due to childhood violation. I have been a Music Director for a local Methodist Church for 29 yrs. My duties were to teach and direct the Adult Choir, Children's Choir, and any other musical duty which might appear. Working with the Children was my most rewarding and enjoyable job. In November of 2014, I listened on the telephone with my daughter while my husband of 35 years suddenly died at home. Three days later, I took an overdose of pills and while in the hospital, I had several visits from my pastor (boss). After several weeks, I came back to church (work). I began having meetings with my boss periodically where we would discuss issues relating to family and grief. Several months later, church staff had a meeting where we planned around the church calendar and where I was informed that the Children's music program would now be under the Director of Children's Ministry. (The Director of the Youth resigned several months later and her duties also went to the Children's Director) So all the children, youth, and music are now under one person. I asked my boss why the children's music was being put under someone else and was told it was to help relieve my stress. Since then, there have been several small performances of the children singing and I have not been involved. I have asked to help but was not allowed. I have asked my boss why I'm not involved, but never get a definitive answer. I have since realized that I'm not being included in anything other than the adult choir. Some of the information that I exchanged with my boss was grief and anger over my husband's death. I have also had indications that these changes did not become such as issue until until after I had personal discussions with my boss. I think that the removal of my children's music duties is a direct result of what my boss learned while I was in the hospital and my discussions with her about my grief. I also believe she took that information and made the decision that I was unstable and possibly a threat to the children. Nothing was discussed with me beforehand and nothing has been discussed with me since. I am quite concerned about any discussions she would have had to have with the PPR committee, who hires and fires. I have never had an issue with anything I have done with the children and youth for 29 years. Therefore, I would like to know what, if any, are any laws that involve HIPPA and Disability confidentiality between clergy, staff, employer, employee. Thank you.
Submitted: 5 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Phillips Esq. replied 5 months ago.
My deepest sympathies for your loss. Unless you have concrete evidence that your confidences were violated, you do not have a case against the Church or the Priest. As for HIPAA, it does not apply to the Priest since the Priest is not considered a health care provider. For more information on HIPAA, click on the link below: Kindly give a positive rating to my response so that I can receive credit for responding to your post. There is no additional cost to you for doing this. Thank you for your cooperation.

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