Man demoted for Facebook comments wins caseTHE ASSOCIATED PRESS | November 17,2012LONDON — Britain’s High Court ruled Friday that a Christian was unfairly demoted for posting his opposition to gay marriage on Facebook.
Adrian Smith was stripped of his management position with the Trafford Housing Trust in northwest England and had his salary cut by 40 percent after posting that gay weddings in churches were “an equality too far.”
The trust said Smith broke its code of conduct by expressing religious or political views that might upset co-workers.
But High Court judge Michael Briggs ruled Friday that Smith had been “taken to task for doing nothing wrong” and found his employer guilty of breach of contract.
Smith said he was glad the court had backed the principle that “Britain is a free country where people have freedom of speech.”
And he received support from veteran gay rights and civil liberties campaigner Peter Tatchell, who said Smith’s employer had overreacted.
“In a democratic society, Adrian has a right to express his point of view, even if it is misguided and wrong,” Tatchell said.
Trafford Housing Trust chief executive Matthew Gardiner, said he “fully accepted” the court’s decision and had apologized to Smith, though it was not clear whether he would be reinstated.
In Britain, same-sex couples can currently form civil partnerships, which carry the same legal rights as marriage. The government wants to change the law to include gay marriage, a move opposed by many religious groups.MORE IN Wire NewsNEW YORK — The families of three unarmed black men who recently died at the hands of police... Full Story
- Most Popular
- Most Emailed
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1778, Capt. James Cook is first European to set eyes on Maui in Hawaiian Islands; 1922, Pharoah Tutankhamun found after 3000 years; 1909, Hollawood movie star Frances Dee born in Los Angeles.
- TOMORROW'S HEADLINES TODAY: Hazmat unit called downtown, Boys & Girls Club hosts dinner for members and families, Secret Santa back on the beat, city discusses runoff problem on Mayfield Road, Brandon gets creative about fixes to town roads, sidewalks.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: In 1944, U.S. begins B-29 bombing raids on Japanese main islands; in 1950, Great Appalachian Storm begins to form; 1963, Lee Oswald killed by Jack Ruby; 1974, D.B. Cooper hijacks Seattle-bound airliner; 1974, 'Lucy' found.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1927, striking Colo. miners attacked with machine guns by state police; 1877, Thomas Edison announces invention of the phonograph, 1959, Alan Freed fired by WABC 770 AM for accepting payola to promote records.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1863, President Abraham Lincoln delivers short speech in Gettysburg, Pa.; in 1984, a Pemex LNG facility destroyed by series of gas explosions, 600 people are killed; in 1998, Senate builds fire under Bill Clinton.
- RICHARD'S POOR ALMANACK: On this day in 1831 – Independent South American super-state, Gran Colombia, dissolved; 1856 - Fort Buchanan built to control Apache warriors; 1970 - William Calley Jr. goes on trial after 1968 massacre at My Lai, Vietnam.