Labour Party
Lillian Ladele who discriminates against gay men and lesbians.

Lillian Ladele who discriminates against gay men and lesbians.

I wrote last year about the perverse decision favouring Lillian Ladele. This was the woman who thought she should be able to ignore the law of the land and refused to conduct Civil Partnership ceremonies. She probably wanted to pour green custard over them, but that’s another example of people unable to accept democratic decisions taking the law into their own hands. I see from this week’s Islington News that having had the original decision overturned (has anybody investigated the tribunal who came to this perverse decision?) that her latest appeal has failed. As Ms. Ladele is funded by the Christian Institute I expect this to go all the way up through the House of Lords and to the European Court of Human Rights wasting a lot of time and money that could be far more productively used. They have not recorded their defeats on their website.

I googled Lillian Ladele to research this piece and all the top hits are totally out of date.

BBC                Times                Sunday Times                Daily Mail                 Daily Telegraph etc, there are more

I cannot find one national news organisation with the facts. Worse click on any of these above and you will think that Lillian Ladele has won her case. Google is a neutral tool so the responsibility lies with the broadcasters anbd the newspapers. All these sites are out of date. None have been updated (and the appeal was overturned in December) and they still give a distorted view of what happened. Of course they like a controversial story and find common sense boring. I think it is unlikely that appealing to these organisations good nature will get them to report more responsibly. What will I suspect is when someone defames or worse assaults somebody because of what they have found on the net.

I am against internet regulation but as a public organisation the BBC is failing massively by not reporting the facts. It is following the 24/7 “feral beast” trend that menas that despite massive improvements in life expectancy the NHS is still lazily bashed. It is not perfect but where are the stories about people living longer happier lives. It is a fact because actuaries have confirmed this:

“Over the last few years, the issue of longevity risk has gained prominence as mortality rates, and therefore life expectancies, have been improving at an accelerating and faster than anticipated pace.” The Actuary 1.5.08

A Labour government, an improved economy and NHS and people live longer. Conclusive to me but who makes this causal link in the media? No it’s a MMR scare here and an isolated example of bad treatement there.  A true picture is that by voting Labour the country has accelerated its increase in longevity. Vote Labour to Live Longer, it’s a fact! What a slogan!

I have leapt a bit here but the point is the same. We live longer and have more money. We are more tolerant and Lilllian is an outdated bigot.

Yet our media fails to report this and runs down things far more readily than praising them. They need to get how the web works and their responsibilities to their readers and viewers.


  1. I personally would be delighted to marry gay couples, and would accept any invitation to the reception. However some people do have religious and conscience objections to homosexuality, mostly sincere. I quite object to the PC brigade ramming their opinions down somebody’s throat especially where practical arrangements could be made for other people to conduct gay ceremonies. If Ms Ladele had been Muslim would you of been so critical?

    On the reporting in the mainstream media (MSM) I will agree with you. The way the MSM reports on health is no more than a cut and paste of the Department of Health’s policies. So I can sympathise.

    Secondhand smoke and drinking is appalling reported in a biased fashion and the fatties will be joning them soon.

  2. I think that there may be some legal complications here Mary. As I read it, though I haven’t checked, it was common practice in the office for those who couldn’t overcome their conscience or who wanted out of a particular assignment to swap with others, which for many years was a workable arrangement. Then a new policy that people should do what they were told to do by diversity-heads in the council was issued and made equivalent to a part of the contract.

    Ms Ladele refused to uphold the new imposed term and she was dismissed by an employer more powerful than her, as often happens in this sort of contractual ‘negotiation’ we’re all supposed to perform.

    However, Ms ladele’s objection–that she could not accept a homosexual marriage on religious grounds–seems to me to fail because religious discrimination isn’t something tribunals have to decide, and anyway, civil unions are not marriages.

    Like your correspondent in the bank employment case, Ms Ladele’s case seems to have hinged around the allegation that bullying went on to get her to change her mind or to force her out, though the circumstances are radically different.

    Indeed, if one was religious, nothing that goes on in a council building is religious as such. What Ms Ladele is therefore claiming–in part– is that her personal offence led her to a position where she could not do a job which she had accepted and which she was paid to do, and that she could not accept the law of the land.

    Her one hope, I would have thought, is the suggestion that this is not the job she was originally performing.

    I’m not sure that this is just a case of religious discrimination versus a piece of social engineering, or that it deserves the prominence that you are giving it. I am unsure whether town halls should control registrars, but I think that if people want to style themselves professionals and have the freedom to withdraw from work they should be paid by fee and not accept wages.

  3. I should clarify, since I wrote early in the morning; cases involving religious discrimination are possible in tribunals, but tribunals have to decide only if a reasonable person would think that there was a case and if the employer has failed to rebut it.

    So they don’t decide on the ins and outs of what must in all cases constitute it. Think about it–they can’t. If you don’t think that a civil union is a marriage, as a religious person shouldn’t, then it’s a matter of refusing to uphold the law; you lose.

    If you think that people who make you do a civil union are running against the tenets of your faith, you have to show how a gay civil union in a country where its legal does so to a reasonable person. You lose.

    If Ms ladele is just saying ‘oh, this whole situation offended against my interpretations of my faith’, I think that a tribunal could fall back on one of the arguments above.

    Which is why, I presume, that she isn’t.

    Normally, things like whether working on a Sunday was a problem for a strict Protestant are the issue. Tribunals, like Magistrates courts, can be strange places in which all sorts of evidence is sucked in needlessly. Global warming was being pronounced on in one last month, I noticed.

    The layers to this case are laid on as in the comment above. If anyone looking for enlightenment on the case and in agreement with Mary (and me) that the mainstream press do a terrible job, my suggestion would be to start with the case and then look to a law site on the 2003 religious disrimination regulations.

    You could also have a look for Andrew McClintock’s case, as he was a JP who didn’t believe in same-sex adoption; there’s a nice summary on The regulations are very confusing, as between freedom of conscience and refusal to apply social experiments. Mr McClintock asked to be screened from gay cases after he was employed, which is different from Ms Ladele, and argued on both grounds–I think she doesn’t.

    You might also want to have a look at the Eweida v British Airways case on

    That way, this blog (despite my best, bleary-eyed efforts to confuse the issue) would have done some good. Hope that the long comment is acceptable Mary!

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