High Court Judge Quashes Homosexual Harassment Law
A judge in the Belfast High Court has quashed laws which threatened the religious freedom of Christians.
Mr Justice Weatherup struck down the ‘harassment’ provisions of the Northern Ireland sexual orientation regulations. This means Christians cannot be sued for expressing their opposition to homosexual practice.
The judge also ruled that religious liberty may be significantly affected by the regulations in individual cases which may come before the courts.
The judge added that in such cases County Courts in Northern Ireland should consider the principles of the Brocki case from Canada.
In that case a court ruled that a Christian printer should not be forced to print material which goes against his core religious beliefs, but that a Christian printer must be willing to print other material, such as letterhead, for homosexual customers.
Today’s ruling also narrows the sexual orientation regulations in Northern Ireland so that they cannot apply to the school curriculum or affect every activity of a faith-based group which receives some public funding (only the specific activity for which a faith-based group receives public funding will be affected).
I am greatly disappointed that the BBC website is running a distorted report of today’s ruling. This is another example of the BBC’s bias.
There is no doubt that the religious freedom of Christians in Northern Ireland is very much safer as a result of this legal action, but there will still be cases where Christians must defend themselves in court.
The Christian Institute will work hard to support cases of strategic importance to religious freedom and will work to ensure that the principles from today’s High Court ruling are followed in the rest of the UK.