Housing manager demoted over gay marriage Facebook comments wins case

Nov 16, 2012

Adrian Smith has won his High Court case against his employer for demoting him and cutting his salary by 40 per cent all because he said gay weddings in churches would be “an equality too far”.

He made that comment outside work time, on his own personal Facebook page which wasn’t visible to the general public. Yet managers at Trafford Housing Trust, near Manchester, said it was “gross misconduct” and punished him.

That was outrageous. But even when everyone – including gay marriage campaigners – said the Trust had gone way too far, they still refused to see sense. They dug their heels in and said Adrian’s comments were beyond the pale.

That’s what happens when politicians push radical agendas to rewrite marriage. It sends a signal that people who believe in traditional marriage are fair game. Outcasts even. It generates an atmosphere where it’s OK to trample on other people’s sincerely held beliefs – especially in the public sector.

Adrian has won today in the court. Very many people will be delighted for him. But, if marriage is redefined in law there will be many more cases like his. And – given that the law would have changed – no one can be sure they would have a happy outcome.

The Government should drop these divisive and unpopular plans right now.

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Read a report on the BBC News website

Read the full Judgement