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An Employment Tribunal in Glasgow has given the green light to Warren Bader, a member of the Masorti movement, to pursue a case against the Glasgow Hebrew Burial Society under the Employment Equality (Religion or Belief) Regulations 2004.
The judgement, which came through last week, follows a hearing on November 17 - and concluded that Mr Bader would be covered under the regulations, and was entitled to a tribunal despite being freelance, because he was personally contracted to carry out the work. GHBS was to decide on Sunday whether to settle the case or go to the Employment Tribunal in the next three months.
Mr Bader brought the complaint after he received a letter on February 23 informing him that his services as burial officer were no longer required. He was given no warning or reason for the sudden severance.
There was widespread speculation in the community that Mr Bader, who had a reputation as an exemplary burial officer, has been treated in this way because of his involvement with the Masorti Scotland movement launched one month before.
The complaint is being brought against the four members of the GHBS management committee: Ephraim Borowski, Barry Cooper, Jeffrey Gladstone and David Jackson.
Mr Bader's lawyer, Stephen Connolly of Miller Samuel in Glasgow explained: "Now that we're over this preliminary hurdle, we can move forward to a full hearing on the merits and the Employment Tribunal will reach a decision about the complaint that has been made.
"This legislation is in its infancy and I'm not aware of cases being brought within the Jewish community before. It's broadly comparable to a sectarian claim within Christianity. We will have to prove that there's a distinct strand of faith that Mr Bader has and that is why he was subjected to these events."
When the JC first covered this case, in March, David Jackson, vice-chairman of GHBS said the sudden decision to stop working with Mr Bader was a money-saving measure.
However, a spokesperson for GHBS contacted this week revealed: "Our arrangements with Mr Bader were terminated for misconduct. Following legal advice we will give no futher comment at this time."