Italy: Ex-MP fined for admitting he would ‘never hire’ gays
A former Italian MP has been fined €10,000 after claiming he would ‘never hire’ a gay person.
Carlo Taormina, of former Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi’s Forza Italia party, appeared in court yesterday after making anti-gay statements in a radio interview.
The politician said in the October Radio24 radio segment that gay people are “against nature”, and that he would “never hire” a homosexual for his law firm.
According to newspaper La Stampa, Judge Monica Bertoncini found that his “discriminatory character of [Carlo Taormina] that he didn’t want to hire gay people in his law firm.”
He was ordered to pay €10,000 (£8000) to rights group Arcigay, which brought the case against him, and will also have to issue a public apology.
The group’s leader Flavio Romani hailed what he claims is “the first conviction in Italy for discrimination against gays and lesbians in the workplace”.
He said: “Taormina learnt one thing he didn’t know: bullies maintain their homophobic jokes and arguments, and it becomes almost a source of pride [for them]… but the Court of Bergamo told them all today that they are outside the rules of a civilised society.”
The move was a departure from his previous position, saying in 2011 he would “never” grant adoption or marriage rights to gays.