Christian primary school worker suing for religious discrimination reaches settlement

A Christian primary school worker who sued Devon County Council for religious discrimination has reached an out-of-court settlement.

Jennie Cain, from Crediton, a former part-time receptionist at the school, will receive an “undisclosed payment” from her employers, the BBC has reported.

The news comes just days after Christian nurse Shirley Chaplin, 54, lost her case against Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Trust Hospital, after a tribunal ruled that it was reasonable to require her to take off her necklace bearing the Christian symbol for health and safety reasons.

Cain sued the school after she was found guilty of serious misconduct over what she claimed was a private e-mail to her friends asking for prayer support for her daughter, a pupil at the school.

In the e-mail she claimed her daughter was upset after she had been warned by a teacher not to talk about “Jesus” again.

The school claimed Cain’s daughter had warned other pupils they would “go to hell” if she did not believe in God.

Cain was suspended for nearly four months while the allegations she had made were investigated.

An internal investigation found her guilty of serious misconduct. She lost an appeal and received a written warning.

In a joint statement Devon County Council and the Christian Institute, which represented Mrs Cain, said: “The parties have agreed to disagree as to whether Mrs Cain has been discriminated against on the grounds of her religion by either staff at the school or the local authority.

“All parties jointly acknowledge that all faiths, including Christianity, must be treated equally and with sensitivity.”

Cain has now decided to resign from the school.

The case was settled before it reached court for a full hearing.

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