David McNab, a maths teacher at St Paul's RC High School, has brought a tribunal
claim against Glasgow City Council arguing he has been discriminated on the
grounds of religious belief. McNab claimed that he was not considered for an
internal promotion to the position of principal teacher of pastoral care because
he is an atheist. He was advised that he would not be interviewed for the post
as the job required Catholic Church approval. Glasgow City Council have defended
their actions on the basis that it forms a "genuine occupational requirement" in
terms of the Employment Equality (Religion or Belief) Regulations 2003. If
the Council are able to establish that being of a particular religion is a
genuine occupational requirement, and provided that this requirement is proportional
according to the circumstances, they may be able to successfully defend the
claim.

The outcome will provide guidance in this area of emerging case law, as well
as on the specific issue of whether local authorities are able to bar non-Catholic
teachers from applying for positions in denominational schools.

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