The European Court of Human Rights has ruled that it is legal to discipline employees for refusing to provide services to same-sex couples on the basis of religious objections. The ruling came in the cases of three British Christians who had refused to perform relationship counseling or conduct civil partnership ceremonies.
Tuesday's decision was welcomed by the National Secular Society. The group's executive director, Keith Porteous Wood, said: "Fortunately, Europe's highest court has now wisely followed numerous lower courts and rejected the applicants' attempts for religious conscience to trump equality law. "The UK has the world's most comprehensive equality laws which already include strong protection for religious believers and they would have been fatally compromised, particularly for LGBT people, had the Grand Chamber overturned any of these judgments. "We hope that this will now draw a line under the attempts by a small coterie of Christian activists to obtain special privileges for themselves which would invariably come at the expense of other people's rights."The Court is based in Strasbourg, France. (Tipped by JMG reader Julian)