Magistrate sacked for gay adoption row faces losing NHS directorship
A magistrate who was sacked for suggesting same-sex couples should not bring up children may face the axe at his NHS directorship.
Richard Page, 69, from Headcorn, had sat on the family court bench of central Kent, covering Maidstone and Sevenoaks, for 15 years prior to being dismissed.
Last year he was reprimanded and sent on an equality course because said he believed it was “natural and in the interests of a child to be brought up by a mother and father”.
Since then, Mr Page, who is also an NHS manager in mental health services, featured in a BBC Breakfast story where he reiterated his earlier thoughts and added that it “would be better for a man and a woman” to be the adoptive parents.
He has now been told by the NHS Trust Development Authority, which can sack directors on behalf of the Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt, that he has been suspended.
Page was told that his views may have a “negative impact” on the Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust, of which is is a non-executive director.
The Authority wrote to Page, who has held the position for five years, to say that his views on gay adoption might “undermine the confidence” of LGBT patients, as well as staff.
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Page has denied being homophobic, saying he had gay friends and colleagues, and that his wife had nursed a man dying of AIDS related illness.
“I would never discriminate against anyone in the health service, and there is no evidence that I have. It is very disappointing that I am being treated like this.”
In a statement about the comments earlier this year the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office (JCIO) said Mr Page had been removed from office on March 9.
Now Andrea Minichiello Williams, the chief executive of the Christian Legal Centre, which is representing Page, has announced that he will sure Mr Gove.
Minichiello Williams said: “He has made the decision to sue the Lord Chancellor for removing him from the bench.
“That will go through the employment tribunal system because he is an office bearer.”
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