A judge in Norwich has ruled that ethical veganism is a philosophical belief. Ethical vegans are vegans who also avoid wearing clothing made from animal products, such as wool or leather, and refrain from using products tested on animals.
Vegan Jordi Casamitjana claims the League Against Cruel Sports because of his dismissed him owing to his beliefs.
Mr Casamitjana claimed he was fired after telling a colleague their pension fund was being invested in companies involved in animal testing. The League Against Cruel Sports claim he was sacked for “gross misconduct”.
At the tribunal in Norwich on Friday, Judge Postle ruled ethical veganism satisfies the tests required to qualify under The Equality Act 2010 and can be protected by the Act, saying it was important and worthy of respect in a democratic society.
Mr Casamitjana’s solicitor, Peter Daly, described ethical veganism as “a philosophical belief held by a significant portion of the population in the UK and around the world”.
Mr Daly said in a statement: “This case, if successful, will establish that the belief entitles ethical vegans to protection from discrimination. The case we have prepared sets out how the belief in principle, and how Jordi’s particular interpretations of it, meet the required legal test.”
After court, Mr Casamitjana said: “It was very important to win this ruling today because it’s not just my case which is obviously important to me personally but… this case will influence the life of many vegans out there. There will definitely be a positive outcome beyond me… It will help the promotion of veganism as a lifestyle because vegans who might be afraid about talking about their belief, that might be feeling that they are not welcome, they will feel empowered now.”
A ruling on Mr Casamitjana’s dismissal will take place at a later date.