'It was really, really hurtful': Transgender woman says she was denied job at Durham Catholic school

Akilah Davis Image
Thursday, June 30, 2022
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"Essentially, the father and head priest at Immaculate Conception told them I wouldn't be allowed to work on Immaculata's campus because I'm transgender"

DURHAM, N.C. (WTVD) -- Wilhelmina Indermaur is qualified to work in classrooms. She graduated from UNC Greensboro (UNCG) and taught students for several years. That's why she couldn't believe the call she received a few weeks ago from the parents of a student with special needs. They wanted Indermaur to be an in-school aide at Immaculata Catholic School.

"The family communicated with me they didn't know what it was about until it started. Essentially, the father and head priest at Immaculate Conception told them I wouldn't be allowed to work on Immaculata's campus because I'm transgender," said Indermaur.

It's been three weeks since Indermaur received the news, but it still feels like yesterday.

"It was really, really hurtful. I didn't eat for a couple days. I prayed a lot. I cried a lot," she said. "It made me feel like I was being told not only do I not have a place in the church, but I'm not appropriate to be around students in their school setting."

The 30-year-old, who says she is Catholic, is no stranger to the school. Other kids she nannies attends Immaculata, which means she's there daily for school pick up and attends Friday morning prayer service.

This move leaves her and the family of the fifth grader scrambling. Indermaur needs a job this fall. As for the fifth grader she planned to work who is non-verbal and requires mobility assistance, an in-school aide is still needed.

"That is a huge disservice to children and students at the school. Makes me wonder what other students needs aren't being met," she said.

Indermaur is calling out the school for posting a photo online with the caption, 'Happy Pride Month.'

This decision is one she calls a step backwards as she believes it disregards the views of Pope Francis.

"All people belong in the Catholic Church if they want to be and this is the most un-Christlike behavior they could have had," said Indermaur.

ABC11 reached out to Immaculata Catholic School, Immaculate Conception Church and the Catholic Diocese of Raleigh for comment. We haven't heard back.