December 22, 2010

Christian health worker suspended over pro-life booklet

by Jan Harris

Just a couple of weeks after the launch of the ‘The Not Ashamed campaign’, which encourages Christians to express their religious views in public, the Daily Telegraph reports that Roman Catholic health worker, Margaret Forester, has been suspended for expressing pro-life views at work.

Ms Forester offered a leaflet to two family planning staff at the health centre where she works as a psychological wellbeing practitioner, because she believed that patients were not being offered sufficient information about the effect that abortion could have on their future health.

The leaflet, titled ‘Forsaken’, outlined the physical and psychological damage experienced by five women after having an abortion, including depression, difficulties with relationships, infection and fertility problems.

Although Ms Forester did not hand the leaflet directly to patients, her action led to her being suspended from her job by North West London Mental Health Trust.

She will now have to face an internal disciplinary committee because of concern that she distributed materials that could cause offence, and she could ultimately be dismissed.

Ms Forester claims that the incident led to her being bullied at work until she was physically sick.

Her case is the latest in a long series of incidents in which Christians have been penalised by their employers for expressing their religious views.

However this attitude seems to go against the views of the general public, according to a recent poll of 1,000 adults carried out by ComRes.

Nearly three-quarters of those surveyed said that Christians should be allowed to follow their conscience at work without facing disciplinary action from their employers.

The survey was commissioned by Christian Concern as part of the Not Ashamed campaign.

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