“Ethical vegan” claim against League Against Cruel Sports settled: Casamitjana

The Shropshire Star reports that Jordi Casamitjana has settled his claim against the League Against Cruel Sports. He alleged that he had been unfairly dismissed by the League as Head of Policy after raising concerns that part of its pension fund was invested with AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, Royal Dutch Shell and tobacco companies. The report quotes him as saying:

“After nearly two years of litigation against the League Against Cruel Sports, I am extremely happy with the conclusion that we have secured. The case has established that ethical vegans are protected from discrimination, and I have received the acknowledgement I sought that my dismissal was based on my ethical veganism, and was not justified or justifiable.”

He added that the League had since changed its auto-enrol pension arrangements to make them “ethical”.

Employment Judge Postle’s ex tempore preliminary judgment in Casamitjana v The League Against Cruel Sports [2020] UKET 3331129/2018 – that ethical veganism is a philosophical belief qualifying as a protected belief within the meaning of s.10 Equality Act 2010 – was published in February.

In my view, that judgment and EJ Postle’s earlier judgment in Mr G Conisbee v Crossley Farms Ltd & Ors [2019] ET 3335357/2018 still raise almost as many questions as they seek to resolve: for an analysis of Conisbee, see the recent article I wrote jointly with Russell Sandberg: “A Critique of the Decision in Conisbee that Vegetarianism Is Not ‘A Belief’” (2020) Ecc LJ 22:1. Given Lord Walker of Gestingthorpe’s statement in R (Williamson) v Secretary of State for Education and Employment [2005] UKHL 15 at [55], obiter, that “Pacifism and vegetarianism and total abstinence from alcohol are uncontroversial examples of beliefs which fall within Article 9”, the issue still seems far from settled.

Cite this article as: Frank Cranmer, "“Ethical vegan” claim against League Against Cruel Sports settled: Casamitjana" in Law & Religion UK, 2 March 2020, https://lawandreligionuk.com/2020/03/02/ethical-vegan-claim-against-league-against-cruel-sports-settled-casamitjana/

3 thoughts on ““Ethical vegan” claim against League Against Cruel Sports settled: Casamitjana

  1. I found it incomprehensible that ethical vegetarianism was found, at paragraph 40 in Conisbee v Crossley Farms, not to be a belief about a weighty and substantial aspect of human life and behaviour. It’s an ethical belief about eating and drinking. If eating and drinking aren’t weighty and substantial aspects of human life and behaviour, what are?

    • I think both cases were very fact specific In Casamitjana the claimant showed how his vegetarianism affected all aspects of his life and behaviour rather than simply being a lifestyle choice or an eating preference.

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