FREEDOM OF THOUGHT, FREEDOM OF SPEECH AND RELIGIOUS BELIEF
Free Speech Union member Ben Dybowski was sacked from a school for sharing his Christian beliefs at a staff-only diversity and inclusion training seminar run by Diverse Cymru, an organisation that trains teachers on ‘unconscious bias’ and ‘trans, gender identity and gender expression awareness’. Having taken the trainer at her word when she described the session as a “safe space” in which to “speak freely”, Mr Dybowski duly did so.
During a ‘break-out’ discussion about how to avoid offending pupils, the teacher challenged the group over whether his Christian beliefs were considered discriminatory. He told them he believed marriage was between a man and a woman, that life began at conception, and that he was opposed to some aspects of sharia law such as the stoning of men for homosexuality.
Less than 24 hours after the session had ended, Mr Dybowski was summoned before the school headmaster and sacked for “hate speech”.
Mr Dybowski, who has an unblemished 20-year career in the profession, started at the school through a teacher employment agency last October.
Speaking to the Mail on Sunday, he said he had never discussed his views with pupils and was always respectful of those with different opinions. His dismissal was, he added, “an attack on Christianity” and “an affront to freedom of speech and freedom of thought”.
FSU General Secretary Toby Young told the Mail that “the way Ben has been treated is outrageous. Had he been an employee of the school, not taken on through the agency, he’d have an open and shut case for unfair dismissal.”
Teachers’ son Mr Dybowski grew up in Poland but has lived in Britain for almost two decades. “I remember well the final decade of communism there, with all of the limits on liberty and free speech. Sadly, some things in Britain now remind me of that period.”
Come and here Ben Dybowski in conversation with local group Free Speechers Wales and West. There will, of course, be plenty of time for discussion and for socialising with fellow free speech supporters.
Doors open 6.45pm, speaker and discussion starts at 7.30pm.
Speakeasies are free for FSU members. We ask non-members to pay £5.00.