‘When does a political opinion become a protected belief?’ Employment Partner Hina Belitz writes for The Times

Hina Belitz, a senior employment lawyer at Excello Law, with over 20 years’ experience, has written an article for The Times about the importance of protecting employees’ rights to express political opinions in the workplace. She has headed up employment teams at several City firms, including DLA Piper, Dentons, and Pinsent Masons, and was the managing partner of her own City of London law firm – Partners Employment Lawyers for 11 years – now part of Excello Law.

In her article, Hina discusses the significance of safeguarding employees’ political expression, particularly in light of recent events such as the Gaza conflict and the International Court of Justice’s ruling on Palestine. She highlights instances where employees have faced disciplinary action or dismissal for publicly expressing support for Gaza citizens.

Hina references the Miller v University of Bristol Employment Tribunal case, which affirmed that anti-Zionist beliefs are protected under the Equality Act 2010. The tribunal ruled in favor of Professor David Miller, stating that his dismissal for expressing anti-Zionist views amounted to discrimination. This decision, though significant, does not set a legal precedent as it was made at an Employment Tribunal.

Hina argues for the need for further clarity in the law regarding the protection of political beliefs, including those related to Israel-Palestine. She emphasizes the role of senior courts in defining and establishing binding boundaries to prevent discrimination based on political beliefs in the workplace. Without such clarity, she fears that employers may rely on their biases rather than adhering to legally informed practices.

Please read Hina’s full article for The Times here