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Fireman wins Gay Pride battle

March 2009

Fireman wins Gay Pride battle

 

A Roman Catholic fireman from Glasgow has won his two-year legal battle against his bosses after he was punished for refusing to take part in a ‘gay pride’ march.

     John Mitchell was one of nine firemen ordered against their will to take part in the event, Pride Scotia, in 2006. But instead of taking part in the rally, they handed out fire safety leaflets to members of the public on a nearby street.

     The men, all from Glasgow’s Cowcaddens fire station, were punished by their employers Strathclyde Fire and Rescue. They remained on written warnings and were ordered to undergo diversity training. Strathclyde Firemaster Brian Sweeney said at the time that the men had damaged their careers by their actions.

     Mr Mitchell took the matter to an employment tribunal. Strathclyde Fire and Rescue has only very recently admitted it failed to take account of John Mitchell’s religious beliefs, according to a report from The Christian Institute.

     Mr Mitchell has been awarded damages and received an apology from his employers.

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