Coptic Christian wins discrimination claim at European Court of Human Rights
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The European Court of Human Rights has ruled recently that an
employee of British Airways who was forced out of her job for wearing a
cross had her religious rights violated.
Nadia Eweida's case was upheld by judges in Strasbourg in a landmark
ruling, stating that her decision to express her faith in this way
warranted protection under the European Convention on Human Rights.
Miss Eweida, a 60-year-old Coptic Christian from Twickenham, was sent
home from work for wearing a small silver crucifix while working as an
airport check-in attendant for the airline. As a result, the ECHR has
ruled that she was discriminated against under freedom of religion
laws. The ruling stated her cross was "discreet and cannot have
detracted from her professional appearance".
However, they rejected similar claims made by three other Christians,
including one from a nurse who was moved to a desk job after she
refused to take off a crucifix which hung round her neck. Her claims
were rejected on the grounds that the removal of her necklace was
necessary to protect the health and safety of nurses and patients.
Another two cases were also dismissed – those of marriage counsellor
Gary McFarlane, 51, and registrar Lillian Ladele, 52, who objected to
some parts of their jobs which they felt conflicted with their beliefs.
Miss Eweida was awarded £1,600 in damages and £25,000 to cover
About the Author
Lawson-West specialise in commercial, business and employment law. Our team
of dedicated commercial solicitors can help with buying or selling a business,
business law and disputes, landlord and tenant issues and commercial property.
Our expert employment team can offer practical advice and guidance on all
aspects of employment law including redundancy, compromise agreements and
dismissal procedures. Visit
www.lawson-west.co.uk for more information.
If you’ve been discriminated
against on the grounds of your religion or belief please
contact employment law specialists Lawson-West on 0116 212 1000.
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Article Published/Sorted/Amended on Scopulus 2013-02-14 11:40:58 in Legal Articles