Some of you will not be aware but a while back an employee of Wakefield & District housing was facing the sack for displaying a Palm Sunday cross in his works vehicle, the British National Party confronted WDH with a demonstration. WDH dropped all charges against Mr Atkinson but now we have found that WDH have now started to victimise Mr Atkinson yet again. Please watch the video at the top of this announcment.
The electrician who won his battle to display a cross in his company van has accused his employers of victimising him following his return to work.
Former soldier Colin Atkinson was facing the sack from the publicly-funded housing association where he has worked for 15 years before a public outcry forced his bosses to back down.
But since his return to the job in early May he says Wakefield and District Housing has reneged on its agreement with him by moving him to another workplace 16 miles away, then withdrew the company van at the centre of the row and told him to travel by bus instead. He claims the company is trying to force him out.
Mr Atkinson, 64, said: ‘I thought common sense had triumphed when the company agreed I could go back to work. But I have found there is still a lot of hostility against me, even though I have done nothing more than defend the basic rights of Christians to express their faith in public.
‘My employers have broken their promises and I believe they are trying to humiliate me or dismiss me for seeking to stand up for my rights. It is disgusting what they are doing.’
He clashed with the housing association, the fifth largest in Britain, after refusing management requests last year to remove the eight-inch cross from his van.
Senior managers had insisted that Mr Atkinson was breaching ‘diversity’ policies as well as uncompromising new rules they introduced in December last year banning employees from adorning company vehicles with personal symbols.
But following heavy criticism by religious leaders, including the former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey, the firm backtracked. Not only did they allow Mr Atkinson to display his cross on the van’s glove compartment, they also dropped all disciplinary action against him.
He was also told he could return to his three-day-a-week job as a training officer overseeing apprentices at the association’s Austin Road depot in Castleford, West Yorkshire.
However, he said he was subsequently treated coldly by one of his managers, who had been one of those who had asked him to remove his cross from his van last year. About a month after Colin returned to work, the manager disappeared from the office.
Mr Atkinson, who lives in Wakefield, said: ‘The company told me that one of the reasons the boss was off was because I was in the office, though I had never been anything but civil towards him. They asked me to move to another centre, Winston House, which was about 16 miles away. I was the only person from my department working there. I agreed reluctantly at the start of this month but it was very difficult to do my job properly there.
Campaigning: How the Mail on Sunday highlighted Colin's plight
‘Moreover, they withdrew my company van, saying that I could travel on the bus if I needed to see apprentices working on site. I was told this was part of general financial cutbacks.’
Mr Atkinson, who has been represented by human rights lawyer Paul Diamond, said he lodged a grievance procedure against the company for breaching its agreement and a week later was asked to stay at home.
He added: ‘Meanwhile, the boss resumed work three weeks ago but I feel he should be the one who should be moved, not me. My bosses have now offered me a pay-off to retire early but a condition is that I, my wife Geraldine and all my family would be prevented from speaking out publicly.
That is not my style. It would be breaching my human rights.’
Andrea Minichiello Williams, director of the Christian Legal Centre which is supporting Mr Atkinson, said: ‘After a public outcry, Colin was allowed to return to work and to continue to display a palm cross in his van.
‘However, since the media attention died away, he has suffered continued harassment and victimisation, and Wakefield and District Housing has not honoured its agreement to allow him to return to work. It seems that WDH hoped that Colin could be bought off and go quietly. But he will not be gagged or bullied.’
Wakefield and District Housing was unavailable for comment.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2020698/Colin-Atkinson-Cross-dashboard-Christians-bosses-bully-him.html#ixzz1FfyfqgoV
The British National Party will not tolerate bullying of our own people no matter what the case maybe.
If anyone feels they have been the victim of workplace bullying please get in touch with your BNP organiser we will direct you in the right place.