What on paper appeared to be a labour dispute, to settle in a court in the east of England, has ended up leading to a judgment of unforeseeable consequences that recognizes veganism as "a philosophical belief" and deserving of legal protection. The incentive of the opinion, announced Friday, was the lawsuit filed by Jordi Casamitjana against their dismissal from the organization animal rights League Against Cruel Sports, which it considers discriminatory and attributed to its radical opposition to any type of animal exploitation. This zoologist Catalan, of 55 years, and naturalized british, explains in this interview with THE COUNTRY the reasons for a campaign that counted with the essential support of the crowdfunding.
Question. The judge has determined that the veganism deserves the protection of the Equality act, passed in 2010, against discrimination on the grounds of race, pregnancy, or sex, among others. How he thought that his cause would go so far?
Response. When I was fired I did not know the legal status of veganism, but my lawyers explained to me that mine could be the first case of this nature and able to operate a change in the law. After accumulating some 1,400 pages of tests, I realized that I could win, but even so I was surprised that the judge failed on the same day of its reading, something unusual that shows the weight of the evidence
Q. The ethical vegan no recognition of its legal protection in the field of work What do you think is going to mean to the thousands of employees that share your philosophy of life?
A. from now on, you will feel more confident to express his philosophy without fear of retaliation. Many wear it with discretion, for fear, perhaps not to be dismissed, but to be treated differently. They now know that, in case of conflict because of discrimination, they can go to the courts. I think that there will be other countries that are going to draw on my case, and that, as a result, there will be a lot more veganism in the world and that it will benefit the millions of animals that are exploited, the environment and public health.
Q. Taken to the extreme, the consequences of the judgment seem to be unaffordable for the business. For example, if the employee refuses to work in a space with leather sofas, or dispatch to the customer of the supermarket products meat.
A. The entrepreneurs have to realize the need to change some rules, to include in the food they serve options vegan or that the uniforms do not force an employee to wear leather shoes. In reality this phenomenon to protect a philosophy already exists in the Uk. For example, if you're a muslim who works in a shop and don't want to handle meat is not halal, the law protects that give you another task. Respect the veganism will not be a huge expense, and the exaggerations which have been made to respond to the fear of the unknown. We are not facing a revolution catastrophic, just before the recognition of those who attempt to change their life to minimize the harm to animals. I think that is a value in a democratic society.
Q. A group of philosophers consulted by THE COUNTRY has been criticized that any style of life seek to legitimize itself in the right. What would you answer?
A. That argument has philosophical value, but not legal in the Uk. The English system (common law) states that the act will be refined through the resolution of cases that are precedent-setting. The Equality Act does not says what is or is not a philosophy because it is expected that future cases will clarify. In the past it has been ruled in favor of environmentalism or pacifism, and against the homophobia, or the neo-nazism. That is to say, everything that is negative and harmful do not pass the test
Q. What led him to embrace veganism and what it means in the day-to-day?
A. Part of my testimony before the judge was a detailed description of the decisions that I make, from when I wake until I go to bed, what toothpaste or clothing use, that there is nothing on or in my house with an animal product and is not among...I'll Never have a romantic relationship with someone not vegan. This philosophy affects my whole life. I hugged her 18 years ago. I have always worked in the world of animal protection and I ended up realizing that the animals are much more human-like than you think, but that they were treated as objects without emotions or motivations. I created a conflict, I stopped eating meat and even wrote a book [The Demons Trial, under the pseudonym J. C. Coast] that distills the process of guilt.Updated Date: 05 January 2020, 01:01