Wednesday, 17 November 2010

Christian doctor dismissed from adoption panel for refusing to recommend gay couples loses tribunal

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Sheila Matthews, the Christian doctor who, as we reported on Monday, lost her job on the Northamptonshire Council Adoption Panel after asking to abstain from cases involving same-sex couples, has had her case dismissed by an employment tribunal in Leicester.

Matthews, in the latest case backed by the Christian Legal Centre, had alleged that her dismissal represented discrimination against her Christian beliefs. But in concluding the hearing, regional employment judge John MacMillan said she had no case:
"The complaints of religious discrimination fail and are dismissed. This case fails fairly and squarely on its facts. In our judgement, at least from the time of the pre-hearing review, the continuation of these proceedings was plainly misconceived... they were doomed to fail. There is simply no factual basis for the claims."
 Matthews was asking the tribunal to refer her case to the European Court of Justice, and speaking outside court she indicated that she may continue to pursue the matter:
"Everything is open to be considered, I'm not making any sort of decisions right now. We need to mull everything over very carefully. I wouldn't have brought the case if I felt we were destined to fail."
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