Chaplaincy, charades and bullying at HMP Wakefield: Burns

In Rev M Burns v Secretary of State for Justice [2023] UKET 1805182/2021, Mr Burns had been an Assistant Chaplain at HMP Wakefield and was dismissed in June 2021 following growing concerns about his performance. He brought a claim for unfair dismissal, discrimination on grounds of religious belief, sexual orientation and disability (in his case, dyslexia) and harassment. One of his complaints was about a game of charades in which one of the clues – selected by one of the prisoners ­­– was Papa Don’t Preach (a single by Madonna), which Mr Burns thought was directed at him.

The Chaplain, the Revd Paul Kirwan, was critical of Mr Burns’s approach to chaplaincy, Continue reading