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UK government attorneys: Christians have no right to wear the crucifix at work

Catholic World News - September 10, 2012

At the European Court of Human Rights, state attorneys for the United Kingdom argued that Christians do not have a right to wear a crucifix at work.

“There is a difference between the professional sphere where your religious beliefs conflict with other interests and the private sphere,” argued James Eadie. “Everyone has the right to express their beliefs, including the right to display religious symbols, but not an absolute right or a right without limits.”

“That does not mean that in their professional sphere anyone can manifest their religious belief in any way they choose,” he continued. “Employees are free to resign if they find their employment incompatible with their religious beliefs.”

The court is considering the cases of four British citizens who allege they were the victims of anti-religious discrimination on the job.

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Show 4 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: John J Plick - Sep. 10, 2012 11:02 PM ET USA

    An interesting perspective that puts the "burden" on the individual to "find a job" that accomodates their religous views, rather than holding the employer accountable for allowing an environment that could be considered "hostile to religion..."

  • Posted by: bkmajer3729 - Sep. 10, 2012 5:44 PM ET USA

    Be careful here folks. Just because you wear a crucix doesn't mean you are forcing your beliefs on others. If the crucifix created conditions where a worker could be hurt (conveyor system) or cause injury to others, then removal is right. If the crucifix is so large as to curiously standout, there could be cause for question. But if this were to occur here, where does it end? What about scapulars worn under cloths, what about a small crucifix on a desk out of way...

  • Posted by: Gil125 - Sep. 10, 2012 2:08 PM ET USA

    Correct, of course, Chatholic, but if it is state lawyers who are making the argument, it must be the official position of the government of Great Britain.

  • Posted by: Chatholic - Sep. 10, 2012 10:00 AM ET USA

    This is simply the attorneys arguing, not the court making a ruling.

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