Christians can be sacked for wearing a cross at work.
Ministers will fight a case at the European Court of Human Rights in which two British women will seek to establish their right to display the symbol. But a document seen by The Sunday Telegraph reveals that ministers will argue that because it is not a “requirement” of the Christian faith, employers can ban the wearing of the cross — and fire staff who insist on doing so.
Article 9 of the European Convention on Human Rights states that “Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief, in worship, teaching, practice and observance.” The Strasbourg case hinges on whether the Article protects a Christian’s right to wear a cross or crucifix at work.
The women bringing the case, Nadia Eweida and Shirley Chaplin, claim that they were discriminated against when their employers barred them from wearing the symbols. They want the European Court to rule that this breached their human right to manifest their religion.