Lillian Ladele may be defeated, but she was never alone. In fact it turns out she wasn’t even alone at Islington Council:
Theresa Davies, a registrar for Islington Council, has claimed she was forced out of her post as registrar because of her religious beliefs against civil partnerships.
Davies, who had worked for Islington Council for 18 years, said she had asked to opt out of performing civil partnerships in 2006.
While her request was being considered, Davies took four months off work due to stress. On her return she was told that she would either be demoted or dismissed.
Instead of leaving the council, Davies chose to take on the offered position of receptionist, which she described as “humiliating”.
Last July, she was put back on the general rota. However, in January this year she failed to turn up to a ceremony she was supposed to be overseeing. Consequently, she was told that unless she presided over civil partnerships she would be demoted from her position.
“I know of other councils that have allowed Christian registrars to carry on by ensuring that colleagues are given civil partnerships,” said Davies. “But I was told this was not Islington’s policy.”
No, we know that Islington Council’s policy was, in the case of Lillian Ladele, to offer different work for the same pay, when she decided that she wanted to breach their policy of providing an equal service for all members of the community, rather than ones that she wanted to pick and choose. Davies may not have liked the ‘humiliating’ new work, but this has already been established not to be discrimination on the grounds of religion. The devoutly religious do not have the right under the law to behave as though they are a special case in who they provide services for. I look forward to her grievance failing equally badly.