Veganism tribunal decision should increase employer awareness

Veganism tribunal decision should increase employer awareness
January 9, 2020

A tribunal decision that ethical veganism can be recognised as a philosophical belief has marked an interesting start to the New Year.

A Judge sitting at the Norwich Employment Tribunal ruled that ethical veganism is a philosophical belief protected by discrimination legislation. The ruling was the result of a case brought by Jordi Casamitjana who alleged he was unfairly sacked by The League Against Cruel Sports (LACS) because of his ethical veganism. LACS said he had been dismissed for gross misconduct.

An ethical vegan is, broadly speaking, an individual who opposes the human use of animals for any reason. Some people choose to simply follow a vegan diet – a plant-based diet avoiding all animal products such as dairy, eggs, honey, meat and fish.

While making headlines regarding the facts of the case, the ruling does not reflect a change in the law.

Latham Parry, partner and head of employment law at Watsons Solicitors advised that employers would do well to carefully think about the products and services they provide at work, as well as the policies they operate. In the case of ethical veganism, this could include consideration of food choices, work uniform and even the fabrics of office furniture (such as leather or wool).

He said: “This protection under law could extend to other philosophical beliefs which have not previously been considered, and employers will need to be aware moving forward.

“As this is a decision by an employment tribunal, it is not binding on other tribunals, but demonstrates how ethical veganism is likely to be treated by other employment tribunals.

“Interestingly, the respondent in this case – The League Against Cruel Sports – did not oppose the claimant’s assertion that ethical veganism was a belief, so do not expect an appeal against this decision.

“In this instance, it does not mean that anyone who is a vegan will be protected under the Equality Act, the nature of ethical veganism is quite extensive and impacts on many different lifestyle choices; each case will still have to be decided on its own facts.”

The Equality Act 2010 protects employees against discrimination and other prohibited conduct in relation to nine ‘protected characteristics’:

  • Age
  • Disability
  • Gender reassignment
  • Marriage and civil partnership
  • Pregnancy and maternity
  • Race
  • Religion or belief
  • Sex
  • Sexual orientation

 

Watsons Solicitors, which has been established for more than 60 years, specialises in family lawemployment lawwills and probate, and conveyancing.

The team of experienced solicitors each hold various accreditations and memberships of professional bodies relevant to their expertise, while the firm’s partners oversee all areas of work.

If you have any queries regarding employment law, please speak to our employment team on 01925 571 212.

Alternatively, click for more information about Watsons Solicitors’ employment law services.

Contact Us

If you are interested or require any information on any of our services then please get in touch for an appointment on:

 01925 571 212
Mon-Fri: 9am - 5pm

Latest News

Cheshire family law solicitors hit the 'gold standard'

A leading Warrington law firm’s family department has secured two further additions to the “gold standard” of practice. Gill Lacey and Amy Jones of Watsons Solicitors have received accreditation to sit on the Law Society Children Law Panel after demonstrating required level of competence and knowledge in representing clients in Children Law proceedings. In doing […]

You’ve appointed your conveyancing solicitor – now what?

You’ve found your dream home and your mortgage offer has been accepted, but there’s still some crucial steps before you get the keys. Appointing a conveyancing solicitor is a vital milestone in the house buying or selling journey – but what activity follows this? We’ve created a checklist to help prepare you and ensure you […]

Double joy for Lauren as she joins leading Warrington law firm permanently

A newly-qualified solicitor has secured a permanent role at a growing Cheshire law firm. Lauren Singh joins Watsons Solicitors after completing her two-year training contract with the Warrington-based company and will split her time between the employment law and family law departments. Her appointment further bolsters the firm’s ever-growing team of young solicitors as it […]

Warrington wills solicitor’s concerns about video-link risks

A Warrington-based wills and probate solicitor has expressed concern over imminent changes to allow wills to be executed via video link. The change in the law due in September, which will be backdated to 31 January 2020, is part of the government’s response to making it possible for the signing of wills to be witnessed […]

Watsons Solicitors
Children Law Accredited
Conveyancing Quality
Criminal Litigation
Family Law Advanced
Personal Injury

Watsons Solicitors is a trading name of Watsons Solicitors Warrington LLP a Limited Liability Partnership registered in England and Wales registered number OC386012 whose registered office is 13 Bold Street, Warrington, WA1 1DJ.

Watsons Solicitors Warrington LLP is authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority number 598547.

Watsons Solicitors
Warrington
Cheshire
WA1 1DJ

01925 444 323
Website managed by Outwrite PR, an online reputation management agency
envelope-oclock-ophonefax linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram