U.K. Christian Registrar Demoted over Refusal to Perform Civil Partnerships for Homosexuals

Mon Jun 22, 2009 - 12:15 pm EST

By Alex Bush

LONDON, UK, June 22, 2009 ( - Theresa Davies, a registrar for the Islington Council in the U.K., says that she was demoted and threatened with dismissal because she refused to perform same-sex "civil partnerships."

Her duties as a registrar included ratifying marriages, but when she refused to perform same-sex "civil partnerships," her employer offered her a position at reception - an entry level position - or dismissal. Davies has been an employee for the council for 18 years.

"Britain is supposed to be a nation that respects freedom of conscience. But my conscience is not being respected," Davies said, "If Islington Council believes in dignity for all, why can't my beliefs be accommodated and why is my dignity not being respected?"

Davies said that she "was shocked because I knew that if they had wanted to they could have accommodated me," and that she knows "of other councils that have allowed Christian registrars to carry on by ensuring that colleagues are given civil partnerships - but I was told this was not Islington's policy."

"I was very disappointed, very saddened and angry. It was humiliating to be back on reception, where I had started," she said.

Davies is taking the matter to court, echoing the efforts of her co-worker and friend, Lillian Ladele, who had won a case against Islington Council with the Central London Employment Tribunal after the council threatened to fire her for refusing to perform the same-sex ceremonies. The decision, however, was later overturned by London's Employment Appeals Tribunal.

Source: The Daily Mail

Related Coverage:

Christian U.K. Registrar Loses Right of Conscience on Same-Sex Civil Unions

"Climate of Fear" Growing in Britain for Christian Civil Marriage Registrars

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