Friday, December 19, 2008

Employment Appeals Tribunal overturns 'Ladele' Employment Tribunal

News in today, causing much relief as the original ET ruling was a complete nightmare. There is no doubt that the original judgment was at the very least badly written (and in parts incomprehensible).

If upheld it would have led to chaos in many employers as employees religious scruples would presumably have to have been given effect by employers irrespective of the core business of the employer in question which would in effect have completely up-ended the traditional set up of our system of employment law.

Quite good coverage can be had from Pink News and the good ol' Christian Institute (who had backed the case).

The full ruling can be obtained from the above sites and totally demolishes the original ET case in almost every aspect and makes for a very interesting read for the substance of its analysis.

The ruling is a great Christmas present and the occasion of much relief that proper equality protections for all people (without a 'trump card' for the religious) have been re-established by the Employment Appeals Tribunal.

In a scarcely less significant case, the Court of Appeal ruled 2-1 in favour of the case taken against Sanderson blinds by someone experiencing homophobic harassment even though he wasn't gay himself (BBC news report). This is an important ruling in the attempt to create workplaces without homophobic harassment, irrespective of whether an employee is gay themselves.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Historic day at the United Nations

A ground breaking day today at the UN as first of all an amendment to remove sexual orientation from a resolution on extra judicial killings was defeated 60 - 76.

Secondly, 66 countries from 5 continents had signed up to a statement read out by Argentina on sexual orientation, gender identity and human rights. This was followed up by a high level side event with a number of impressive speakers (and one singer - though whether that was planned I'm not sure).

In particular great to hear from Sunil Plant, an out gay MP in Nepal (one of the countries supporting the statement).

This follows up on a number of high profile initiatives, including previous attempts at statements by a number and the Yogyakarta principles and initiatives by the Council of Europe and the Organisation of American States.