Universities and same-sex marriage, religious advertising (again), church and state in Eastern Europe, George Bell – in short, much as usual…
Who should judge “fitness to practise”?
Premier reports that a second-year Masters student on a social work course at Sheffield University, Felix Ngole, has been told that he has been “excluded from further study on a programme leading to a professional qualification” and is “no longer recognised as aUniversity student” after having made comments on Facebook about his personal opposition to same-sex marriage. He made the comments in September 2015 discussing the case of Kim Davis, the marriage clerk from Kentucky who was jailed for refusing to issue marriage certificates to same-sex couples.
The Faculty of Social Sciences Fitness to Practise Committee concluded that his comments “may have caused offence to some individuals” and had “transgressed boundaries which are not deemed appropriate for someone entering the social work profession.” He is appealing the decision “because of its wider consequences and the huge issues of freedom of religion and freedom of expression that it raises.” He contends that the issue of fitness to practise is not a matter for the University but for the professional body concerned.
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