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A Christian social worker in the U.K. is taking legal action after his job offer was rescinded for his Christian views of sexuality and marriage.
Felix Ngole was offered his “dream job” as a mental health support worker at Touchstone Support Leeds, a charity partnered with the U.K.’s National Health Service (NHS), but weeks later, the company rescinded the offer when it found out about his Christian beliefs and past victory in a religious liberty case.
Several weeks after receiving his acceptance letter, he received an email from Touchstone Deputy CEO Kathryn Hart, saying he was not fit for the position because the company had “identified some significant areas and concerns” that did not “align with Touchstone Leeds’ ethos and values.”
“In particular, we can see that you have very strong views against homosexuality and same-sex marriage, which completely go against the views of Touchstone, an organisation committed to actively promoting and supporting LGBTQ+ rights,” Hart continued.
She said that she would reconsider if he would embrace Touchstone’s values, including “the promotion of homosexual rights.”
The father of three was then invited to a meeting with Hart and the company’s operations director, Dave Pickard, who questioned him intensely about his beliefs.
Ngole, who fled persecution in Cameroon, compared the questioning to interrogations he experienced in his home country. “They called it a discussion but it felt like I was being interrogated back in Cameroon,” he said. “Every question had an LGBT slant. … I think they were concerned that employing me could risk their Stonewall ranking.”
“What I cannot do, and you cannot reasonably expect me to do without yourselves being discriminatory, is make my participation in the ‘promotion of homosexual rights’ a condition of my employment,” Ngole responded in the meeting, assuring them he would not discriminate against anyone.
A week after the meeting, he received an email from the company officially rescinding his job offer, stating that his beliefs would be “upsetting and offensive” to their patients and would “exacerbate … [their] anxiety and depression.”
Touchstone Support boasts its “Top 100 LGBTQ+ Inclusive Employer” ranking and “Gold” award from the controversial organization Stonewall, which promotes left-wing LGBTQ agenda items in workplaces. The company’s logo even dons the Pride and transgender flags’ colors.
Ngole is now pursuing legal action against the organization under the U.K. Equality Act, which forbids discrimination on the basis of religion.
Andrea Williams, of the Christian Legal Centre, which is representing Ngole, said, “Telling an employee they must ’embrace and promote’ homosexuality as a condition of employment sets a dark and troubling precedent. If left unchallenged it would see Christians who manifest their beliefs barred from working in the NHS.”
The Centre said that he was “the best performing candidate in interview, gaining the highest marks of any candidate on an equality and diversity assessment.”
Religious discrimination is not new for Ngole, as he won a case against the University of Sheffield, which had expelled him for his Christian beliefs. In 2016, the university expelled him for quoting Bible verses about homosexuality in a Facebook discussion and told him not to express his views, even in church, according to CBN News.
The U.K. Court of Appeal rebuked the university in a landmark free speech victory, saying, “The mere expression of religious views about sin does not necessarily connote discrimination.” The Court of Appeal also found that Ngole would “never discriminate against anyone” because of his religious views. His victory in the case played a role in the offer being rescinded, according to The Daily Mail.
This type of discrimination is on the rise in the U.K., according to Williams. “What we see here is the confident totalitarianism of an organization that has been captured by Stonewall and will do anything to keep their Stonewall ranking as high as possible,” she said. “Viewpoint discrimination is escalating in the UK at an alarming rate … Anyone who does not comply and celebrate LGBT ideology must become a ‘non-person.'”
Viewpoint discrimination is a rising concern for British politicians. As The Daily Wire previously reported, U.K. banks backed by the Stonewall group have denied or shut individuals’ accounts for their political views or positions. Prime Minister Rishi Sunak vowed to investigate such discrimination.