Cambridgeshire

Pastor sues Ely school over 'Pride harms children' post

Keith Waters Image copyright Christian Concern
Image caption An investigation began after school caretaker Keith Waters said Pride events were "harmful" to children

A pastor who claimed Pride events were "harmful to children" is suing the school where he worked as a caretaker.

Keith Waters, from Ely, Cambridgeshire, said he got death threats for saying Christians should not attend the events, which support LGBT rights.

He said he felt he had no option but to resign after an internal investigation at Isle of Ely Primary School in June.

The school said it followed "standard HR procedures" but refused to comment further during legal proceedings.

Mr Waters said the school issued him with a final warning which he claimed was as an attack on his religious freedom.

He is suing for constructive dismissal, indirect discrimination and breach of public sector equality duty.

His post on Twitter in June coincided with the first Cambridge Pride festival.

'Not discriminatory'

He wrote: "A reminder that Christians should not support or attend LGBTQ 'Pride month' events held in June.

"They promote a culture and encourage activities that are contrary to Christian faith and morals. They are especially harmful to children."

As well as receiving death threats the 53-year-old said funeral directors had also been sent to his home.

"I maintain my tweet did not discriminate against anyone. It was directed to Christians and it did not criticise individuals or the LGBT community, only Pride events," he said.

A spokesman for Active Learning Trust, which runs the school, said "The trust and its schools value, appreciate and celebrate equality, multiculturalism and diversity in education.

"We were made aware of the social media posts from concerned parents in June 2019. These posts were investigated through the trust's standard HR procedures.

"We'd like to emphasise that Keith Waters resigned from his position with the school. While legal proceedings are ongoing it would not be appropriate for the Trust to comment further at this stage."

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