A teacher facing charges of religious intolerance at the General Teaching Council for England (GTC) has vowed to take his case to the "highest level" if found guilty.
Adam Walker(above), who lives in the North-East and is also a British National Party (BNP) activist, is accused of religious 'intolerance' after being accused of posting comments critical of Islam on the Internet while using a school laptop.
He is being 'tried' by the General Teaching Council (GTC). If convicted he would be the first to be found guilty of such an 'offence'.
The case has already dragged on for over a year as his trade union Solidarity has attempted to ensure he gets a 'fair hearing'. The original chair of the GTC panel Judy Moorhouse was removed from his disciplinary panel after a dossier of evidence was presented to show that, as a declared opponent of the BNP, she would be biased.
The hearing, held in Birmingham, has also been postponed once since the Police were concerned that recent clashes between Muslims and their opponents might spill over to the case.
Solidarity, of which Adam Walker is also President, are studying sentences handed out by the GTC so they can take action in the event that he is convicted and any sanction he is given is more severe than usual.
His defence team believes Mr Walker should have faced computer misuse charges which were 'content neutral' and claim the GTC was wrong to "politicise" the case.
Consequently they will appeal in the European legal system if need be.
Patrick Harrington, General Secretary of Solidarity and representing Mr Walker in the case, said he would use European human rights legislation, which guarantees freedom of expression and other rights in the hearing. "A professional body is not the right level of society or best place to deal with this case, and to consider these kinds of complex argument," he said. "But this is the fault of the GTC for introducing this political and religious element."
He added "I am no lawyer, just a Union Rep, but I am determined that Adam Walker will get fair treatment on the basis of the facts of the case and not suffer discrimination on account of his political or religious opinions. It is a David and Goliath struggle where the odds have been stacked against us and Justice from the very start."
END 12/12/09 Contact: Patrick Harrington (Solidarity General Secretary) 07794 486858
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