A teacher, Ben Dybowski, was terminated from his position at The Bishop of Llandaff Church in Wales School in Cardiff following a discussion regarding his views on marriage during a staff training seminar. During a Q&A session, Dybowski queried whether his beliefs, which define marriage as a union between a man and a woman and life beginning at conception, were perceived as discriminatory. He was reassured that the seminar was a safe space for open dialogue, yet was dismissed the day after expressing his beliefs.
Dybowski has labeled his dismissal as an infringement on freedom of speech and thought and an attack on Christianity. He has made clear that he never shared his views with students and always maintained respect towards others with differing opinions. However, this incident has raised concerns about the future of his teaching career as his case has been referred to the Education Workforce Council, the regulator for teachers in Wales.
The seminar in question was arranged by Diverse Cymru, an organization dedicated to promoting workforce diversity practices, awareness of unconscious bias, as well as trans, gender identity, and gender expression. Ele Hicks, a self-described ‘bisexual activist and change champion,’ led the seminar. Hicks is also associated with the contentious charity, Stonewall.
The event drew over 80 staff members, while no students were in attendance. Toby Young, the Director of the Free Speech Union, has expressed his dismay over the situation. He stated, “The way Ben has been treated is outrageous.” Young pointed out that the incident could potentially be seen as discrimination based on religion or belief, a violation of the Equality Act.