European Court of Human Rights prioritizes fisting, felching, anal penetration, scat , farming etc over freedom to exercise religious convictions ?

The  European Court  of  Human Rights  has  ruled  against  two christians, Lilian Ladele  and  Gary  McFarlane , with respect  to their  refusal  to provided  services to persons  because  of  the  individuals  sexual orientation.

The  christians  have  lost  their  jobs  for  not  marrying homosexuals (Ladele)   and  refusing  to counsel  homosexuals  about  their  sexual  problems  (McFarlane) .

In Jamaica  the  buggery  law   criminalizes  all  sexual  behaviour  between  Men who  have  Sex  with Men (MSM) .  It  does  not  criminalize  same- sex attraction or  identity

how  should  Jamaicans  interpret  the  Court’s  ruling ?

January 15, 2013 – European Convention of Human Rights

Court awards €32,000 after Christian workplace human rights protest

In a decision published today, judges have awarded €32,000 to a British Christian who complained about a workplace breach of her human rights.

The European Court of Human Rights declared that the right to manifest religion at work is protected but must be balanced against rights of others in its decision in the case of Eweida and Others v. the United Kingdom (application nos. 48420/10, 59842/10, 51671/10 and 36516/10).

In its judgement, which is not final, the European Court of Human Rights held:

by five votes to two, that there had been a violation of Article 9 (freedom of religion) of the European Convention on Human Rights as concerned Nadia Eweida;

unanimously, that there had been no violation of Article 9 of the European Convention, taken alone or in conjunction with Article 14 (prohibition of discrimination), as concerned Shirley Chaplin and Gary McFarlane; and

by five votes to two, that there had been no violation of Article 14 taken in conjunction with Article 9 as concerned Lilian Ladele.

All four applicants are practising Christians. As just satisfaction, the court held that the United Kingdom was to pay Nadia Eweida 2,000 euros (EUR) in respect of non-pecuniary damage and EUR 30,000 for costs and expenses.

Eweida, a British Airways employee, and Chaplin, a geriatrics nurse, complained that their employers placed restrictions on their visibly wearing Christian crosses around their necks while at work. Ladele, a
Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages, and McFarlane, a Relate counsellor complained about their dismissal for refusing to carry out certain of their duties which they considered would condone homosexuality.

The Court did not consider that the lack of explicit protection in UK law to regulate the wearing of religious clothing and symbols in the workplace in itself meant that the right to manifest religion was breached, since the issues could be and were considered by the domestic courts in the context of discrimination claims brought by the applicants.

In Eweida’s case, the court held that on one side of the scales was Eweida’s desire to manifest her religious belief. On the other side of the scales was the employer’s wish to project a certain corporate image. While this aim was undoubtedly legitimate, the domestic courts accorded it too much weight.

As regards Chaplin, the importance for her to be allowed to bear witness to her Christian faith by wearing her cross visibly at work weighed heavily in the balance. However, the reason for asking her to remove the cross, namely the protection of health and safety on a hospital ward, was inherently more important than that which applied in respect of Eweida and the hospital managers were well placed to make decisions about clinical safety.

In the cases of Ladele and McFarlane, it could not be said that national courts had failed to strike a fair balance when they upheld the employers’ decisions to bring disciplinary proceedings. In each case the employer was pursuing a policy of nondiscrimination against service-users, and the right not to be discriminated against on grounds of sexual orientation was also protected under the convention.

 

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http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/belief/2013/jan/17/lillian-ladele-loser-christian-discrimination-rulings

Lillian Ladele is the real loser in Christian discrimination rulings

It’s good that the ECHR clarified issues about freedom of religion in the UK. But they got it wrong in the case of Ladele

Lillian Ladele and Gary McFarlane

Relate counsellor Gary McFarlane (left) ‘knew he would be expected to counsel … same-sex couples [before he started his job]. But it was very different for Lillian Ladele.’ Photograph: PA

There was not a lot to cheer about in Tuesday’s judgment at the European court of human rights. Nadia Eweida, the British Airways employee who won the right to wear her cross at work, will doubtless talk up her “victory” just as she talked up her victimhood. But the Strasbourg judgment is hardly a triumph for her. Within months of her being sent home for refusing to remove her cross while at work, the adverse publicity led the International Airlines Group CEO, Willie Walsh, to state publicly that the uniform policy would be reviewed. Thereafter the ban was lifted. In any event, some while ago David Cameron had given a clear indication that the coalition was minded to change the law, which was perceived (wrongly) as a prohibition on Christian symbols in the workplace. All that Eweida has won is a great deal of media coverage for maintaining the status quo in relation to the revised dress code of a private sector employer. The qualified nature of her success was doubtless the reason why the Strasbourg judges awarded her only a tiny fraction of what she had sought by way of damages.

 

However, aided by a host of interveners (including a clutch of Anglican bishops, both serving and retired), the European judges have given a few gentle prods to their domestic counterparts. First, they have made clear that the English judiciary should not assess the legitimacy of religious beliefs or the ways in which those beliefs are expressed. Provided the claimed beliefs and their expression attain “a certain level of cogency, seriousness, cohesion and importance”, no examination of their veracity should be embarked upon.

 

Second, the Strasbourg court has stated with clarity that it is unnecessary for a manifestation of belief to be doctrinally mandated in order for it to be protected under article 9 of the European convention on human rights, which deals with freedom of religion. This should bring an end to the developing practice in UK courts which seems toaccommodate the Sikh kara (bracelet) and kirpan (dagger), for example, but not the Christian cross, which has been denigrated somewhat as a mere fashion accessory worn simply as a matter of choice.

 

Third, and equally welcome, is the clear steer away from what commentators have come to call the “specific situation” rule. The Strasbourg court has made it plain that where an individual complains of a restriction on freedom of religion in the workplace, it is not enough to assert that the possibility of changing job will negate any interference with the right to freedom of religion. Employers will no longer be able to say: we are not stopping any employee practising their religion because he or she can simply resign and move to another job. It follows that several English cases decided on this impugned basis can no longer be considered to be reliable statements of legal principle.

 

The fact that the Strasbourg court considered that the court of appeal got the balancing act wrong in weighing (a) BA’s wish for consistent corporate livery and (b) Eweida’s unobjectionable desire to make a small display of her faith is hardly a big deal: BA had already made that concession by changing its uniform policy several years earlier. It is a little surprising, however, that a supra-national supervisory court chose to reverse what, on any account, is the exercise of a discretion which one might think is better determined conclusively by a national court.

 

And it is similarly unsurprising that nurse Shirley Chaplin lost her claim because, on the particular facts of her case, the scales fell the other way. Her workplace was a hospital where concerns of health and safety amounted (as a matter of common sense) to a compelling and proportionate reason for a restriction on a nurse’s freedom otherwise to manifest her religious beliefs.

 

But perhaps the real loser in the four conjoined applications is Lillian Ladele. It is hard to improve on the way her case was put by the two dissenting judges in their powerful minority opinion:

 

 

“It is … pertinent to observe that when [Ladele] joined … the London borough of Islington in 1992, and when she became a registrar of births, deaths and marriages in 2002, her job did not include officiating at same-sex partnership ceremonies. There is nothing to suggest … that it was to be expected … that marriage registrars would have to officiate at these ceremonies in the future. If anything, both the law (the Civil Partnership Act 2004) and the practice of other local authorities allowed for the possibility of compromises which would not force registrars to act against their consciences. In [Ladele’s] case, however, a combination of backstabbing by her colleagues and the blinkered political correctness of the borough of Islington (which clearly favoured “gay rights” over fundamental human rights) eventually led to her dismissal.”

 

 

It is deeply unfortunate that the five judges in the majority failed to differentiate these important facts from those of Gary McFarlane the Relate counsellor whose application was rightly rejected by the European court. Before he started his job he knew that he would be expected to counsel both straight and same-sex couples. But it was very different for Ladele. An unanticipated and unilateral change in a fundamental term of her employment gave her a stark choice: to act against her religious convictions (which the court accepted were conscientiously and sincerely held) or to leave her employment. With creative rostering and constructive deployment, Ladele’s religious convictions could have been accommodated by Islington without any detriment to the registration of civil partnerships in the borough. Self-evidently, staff employed subsequently would not have the benefit of conscientious objection.

 

While the clarifications in the law as summarised above are to be welcomed, it is regrettable that a deserving applicant such as Lillian Ladele has lost her meritorious fact-specific case and is jobless; whereas Nadia Eweida, whose job is still open to her without any restriction, has secured nothing more than judicial approval in Strasbourg of a wise concession that was made by senior executives at BA long before any litigation was contemplated.

 

 

http://www.christianvoice.org.uk/index.php/2013jan15echr/

Christians lose discrimination case

Registrar Lilian Ladele lost her case.

Registrar Lilian Ladele lost her case.

Three out of four Christians have lost cases against discrimination in the European Court of Human Rights.

Shirley Chaplin, Gary McFarlane and Lillian Ladele lost their employment tribunal hearings in England and argued that their employers’ actions went against articles 9 and 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights, which protected their rights to “freedom of thought, conscience and religion” and prohibited religious discrimination.

Shirley Chaplin was moved to a desk job by Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Trust after they changed the uniform code to a v-neck, exposing the necklace bearing a cross she had been wearing.  Chaplin’s employers suggested that her cross on a chain might get caught on somebody.  There was no evidence it ever had.  At the same time, however, the employers allowed two Muslim doctors to wear a close-fitting hijab.

Gary McFarlane is a Christian counsellor who was sacked from his job with Relate in 2008 because he confided that he would not be comfortable counselling homosexual couples about sexual problems. Even after Relate conceded that they were wrong to sack Mr McFarlane without giving him notice, they still didn‘t give him his job back.

Lilian Ladele was a Christian Registrar for the London Borough of Islington, appointed before the Civil Partnership Act 2004 changed the law.  Originally she was allowed to swap shifts with colleagues so she would not have to compromise her convictions. However, in March 2006 two homosexual registrars complained about Ladele’s refusal to perform gay unions.  The local authority changed its rules in December 2007 and she was dismissed.  Even though she initially won her case against Islington Council in July 2008, the Employment Appeal Tribunal ruled against her later that year.

In all three cases, the European Court Judges held that the UK had not violated the applicants’ rights.

In the fourth case, British Airways was held to have violated the rights of Nadia Eweida under Article 9 when it told her to remove or cover up a necklace with a cross.

Ms Eweida, 60, a Coptic Christian from Twickenham in south-west London, told the BBC she was “jumping with joy” after the ruling, adding that it had “not been an easy ride”.

The four made individual applications to the ECHR after losing separate employment tribunals but their cases were heard together.

David Cameron faced charges of hypocrisy after calling for a Christian ‘fightback’ and then instructing ministers to contest the claims.  As a result, the UK argued that the rights of the employees were only protected in private.

The ruling severely limits the extent to which Christians who take their beliefs seriously can hold down jobs in the public sector and is a step back for religious freedom in the United Kingdom.

Elizabeth Oldfield, Director of Christian think-tank Theos, said:

‘One does not have to agree with the beliefs of the applicants to support their cases. It should not be beyond the wit of an employer to work with strongly-held religious commitments, rather than dismiss them. However, what we are increasingly seeing is an unwillingness to accommodate them reasonably.’

See: Christians take cases to Euro-Court (Sep 2012)

 

 
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