12 Jul 2012

Law changes possible on wearing of religious symbols at work

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The UK Prime Minister, David Cameron has recently said during the Prime Minister’s Question Time that he may consider bringing in laws protecting the rights of people to wear religious symbols whilst they are at work.

Issues have arisen out of the 2006 case of Nadia Eweida (pictured right), a British Airways employee who was sent home because British Airways felt that her wearing of a cross was in violation of their dress code. Eweida took her case to the Employment Tribunal, the Employment Appeals Tribunal and then to the Court of Appeal in 2010, all of whom upheld the employers action. British Airways have since changed their policy on dress code to accommodate the wearing of religious symbols.

She has now taken her case to the European Court of Human Rights seeking justice. She is joined in her fight by a former NHS worker, Shirley Chaplin from the Royal Devon and Exeter Hospitals NHS Trust.  Chaplin had been told that her wearing of a crucifix was in breach of the NHS codes on wearing of necklaces in hospitals on safety grounds.

The Prime Minister’ comments seem to suggest that regardless of the results of the European Court’s ruling, workers will be able to wear articles of religious significance in workplaces, should the law be  changed to accommodate this.

25 Oct 2011

The Bevan Foundation Annual Meeting

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The Bevan Foundation held an evening of Culture, Community and Celebration to mark 10 years of the Bevan Foundation on Friday 21st October 2011 at Ebbw Vale. This was to celebrate 10 years of existence of the Bevan Foundation which has continued to contribute to many major political debates on issues affecting the people of Wales.

The gathering (shown in the picture) were treated to a stimulating lecture by the prominent local historian, Dai Davies on the topic of ‘The Dream of Aneurin Bevan’. The audience appreciated an insight into what Aneurin Bevan’s ethos had been even when creating the landmark National Health Service (NHS). Dai Davies argued that the provision of free health care was in Bevan’s view simply an element of allowing people to live a full life, and thus contribute to the growth of a happy and healthy society by freeing people from their health worries.

Prior to the celebrations, the Bevan Foundation held a well attended Annual General Meeting at which the Trustees presented a report on what the Foundation had done over the previous twelve months. A number of new Trustees were also elected to serve on the Foundation’s Governing Body.