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11 June, 2007

The good book

Last week, I read of the slightly depressing case of a teaching assistant who left her job alleging religious discrimination.

A born-again christian, Sariya Allan had refused to listen to a child reading a Harry Potter novel because 'god had stated in the bible that witchcraft was "an abomination"' and 'author JK Rowling [is] a "real witch"... hearing the seven-year-old girl reading out spells from the story would leave [Allan] cursed'.
It's alleged that the assistant headmaster questioned the seriousness of Allan's objection, and took disciplinary action. Allan resigned.

Fine so far, but the depressing part was that I strongly suspected Allan's case would succeed; that a preposterous attitude to a childrens' book would be accepted as a legitimate expression of personal faith, to be respected by the employer. It seemed an extreme instance, but arguably within the remit of discrimination legislation.

Thankfully, I was wrong. The tribunal found against Allan, confirming that her handling of the situation was unreasonable, thereby neatly dodging the religion issue.


I'm sick of fundies (I refuse to use the word 'Christian' to describe people like her) who bleat 'religious discrimination' whenever they're not allowed to impose their narrow worldview on others.

Posted by Tim Hall at June 12, 2007 12:36 PM
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