Published: 11:00, 22 November 2016
A Christian former magistrate and NHS director axed for expressing his views on gay adoption is suing Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt.
Headcorn JP Richard Page was banned from applying for any other board level position in the health service after suggesting it was natural and in the interests of a child to be brought up by a mother and father on national television.
The comments made in March saw the JP sacked after serving 15 years on the bench in Maidstone and Sevenoaks.
The 70-year-old was suspended from his position as non-executive director on the board of Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust (KMPT) after a staff member complained because his comments were held to ‘undermine’ confidence in the Trust's leadership, particularly among the LGBT community.
After his term finished the father of three was rejected from reapplying and furthermore told by NHS Improvment’s Termination of Appointment Panel (TAP) he would be prohibited from taking on a senior position at any other Trust.
Mr Page has now launched a legal case against the NHS at an employment tribunal on the grounds of religious discrimination under the 2010 equality act. He is also pursuing a similar case against the Lord Chancellor for his sacking as a JP.
The devout Christian initially made comments about the suitability of same-sex parents during a family court case in 2014.
He says he is the victim of political correctness and stands by what he said.
Mr Page said: “I think we are becoming less tolerant as a society. It is quite interesting that people really feel they can’t say things because of political correctness.
“I have had an amazing number of people contacting me, and coming up to me to say well done.”
Andrea Minichiello Williams of the Christian Legal Centre which is representing Mr Page, told the Mail on Sunday: “Once again we find political leaders washing their hands of Christians prepared to stand up for their faith."