I’ve recently spotted an atypical case that may top all the water cooler bully squabbles of the past.
A man in Oxford, England sued AND won a bid to appeal against his former company for discriminating against his right to discuss man-made climate change. Tim Nicholson, a former engineer for Grainer plc – a realty company in the United Kingdom – has taken his former employer to court for “unfair dismissal under the Employment Equality (Religion and Belief) Regulations Act of 2003,” according to BBC News. This Act covers religious as well as philosophical beliefs. But why was he fired in the first place?
Before Nicholson pressed charges, he was the head of sustainability at Grainger. He wanted to set up a “carbon management system” for his company, in an attempt to measure its carbon footprint. However, Grainger refused to grant Nicholson the proper information to make an investigation on the company this past March. He was then released on some suspect “structural” and “operational” grounds. Was Grainger covering something up? With looming climate bills to be passed to make companies clean up their day-to-day proceedings, there’s no telling what “the UK’s largest listed residential landlord with approximately £2.3bn of assets and £3.0bn of assets under management” might be trying to do. On a site search on Grainger’s page, Nicholson’s name is nowhere to be found.
So, what does this mean for other companies? Well, James Delingpole of The Telegraph is rooting for this guy. He and others think this case marks a trend where other lifestyle choices like veganism, feminism, and humanism might garner the legal benefits of religious choices. Justice Michael Burton of the British High Court’s ruling goes even further to explain why this prediction may become reality someday.
Photo by kearnsy.com.au