U.K. executive says he was fired for being green

Dismissal unfair because it was based on his philosophical beliefs, he says
|hrreporter.com|Last Updated: 11/26/2009

A British executive, who says he was fired because of his views on climate change, is making a claim against his former employer for unfair dismissal under the United Kingdom's Employment Equality (Religion and Belief) Regulations.

Tim Nicholson, 42, was the head of sustainability at property company Grainer from 2006 to 2008. He said his strong views on climate change and the environment led to clashes with senior staff.

In March 2009, employment judge David Sneathgranted Nicholson permission to make the claim under the legislation, which is meant to protect workers from being dismissed on the basis of their philosophical beliefs.

Grainger disagreed with the decision and is challenging it, stating Nicholson's beliefs about climate change are scientific, not philosophical, and therefore not covered by the law.

The company's lawyer told the Employment Appeal Tribunal a philosophical belief must be based on a philosophy of life, not an environmental belief and not an assertion of disputed facts.

Philosophies that cover important areas of life should be protected by law and environmentalism is one those, Nicholson's lawyer told the tribunal.

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