Wednesday, August 11, 2010

No Justice for Duke

A message from Duke Amachree to the supporters of CCFON and CLC:

To all who have been supporting me

I am sad to announce that I have lost my case with Wandsworth Council. As you know, last year I suggested to a client with an incurable illness that she should not give up hope but try putting her faith in God, which led to my dismissal by Wandsworth Council for gross misconduct.

Sadly the tribunal has ruled that the Council were right to dismiss me for my comments. They also found that the Council had not discriminated against me on the basis of my religion. In addition, the tribunal took the view that I had breached confidentiality by publicising my case. The decision has come as a huge surprise to me and my legal team.

I had worked for Wandsworth Council for 18 years and had an unblemished record. Yet, as a result of the comments I made in one 45 minute housing interview, I was subject to 6 months of investigations by the Council and put under huge strain. My solicitor was even told by the Council that saying “God bless” to a client would require an investigation if a client complained.

The client herself expressly stated that she did not want me to be dismissed for what I had said and I had never been told that such small talk in a housing interview was prohibited.

I will be appealing the decision with the backing of my legal team. This is a sad day for Christians who simply want to live out their faith in the workplace without fear. But my heartfelt thanks goes to all of those who have supported me, including the Christian Legal Centre, who I know will continue to stand with me as we contend for justice.


Duke Amachree

A message from Andrea Minichiello Williams, Director of the Christian Legal Centre:

Thank you for all of your support on this case. We are stunned that the tribunal failed to recognise the draconian way in which Duke was treated and we are dismayed that they found that Duke had not been discriminated against on the grounds of his faith. This decision will send yet more shock waves through the Christian community when they realise that making a couple of comments encouraging faith in God can lead to being dismissed for gross misconduct. We will appeal the decision.

As you can imagine, to take this forward will require additional legal costs, but we at CLC are determined to do whatever it takes to ensure that justice is done for Duke. If you are able to commit to making a donation towards the continuation of this case, then please do so using the donate options below.

As importantly, we HAVE to get this message out to the wider church across the UK, many of whom are not aware of Duke or of the prevailing climate against Christians in this country at this time. More than ever before we are in need of the support of the whole Church of Christ in this land – please help us by forwarding to the members of your Church, to your friends and family.

Please pray, please pass on this email, and please make a donation. We need your help at this time. Thank you to all of you who have been praying with us and standing alongside Duke.

I will continue to keep you updated on progress with news as it comes in.

I say 'God bless' many times a day. GJW

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