Barrister – I am now going to call an expert on human behaviour. In your opinion, do you have any reason to believe that children who come into contact with homosexuals can be adversely affected in any way? Psychologist – If you mean, is there a likelihood that they will be influenced to become homosexuals themselves, then absolutely not. There has been no evidence to at all to suggest this, as being a homosexual does not mean that you will pass on your sexuality to others around you. It is not contagious.
Barrister – Do you feel there is any need therefore to protect the children of St Augustine's school from Jeffrey, as suggested by our opposition? Psychologist – To protect them from what exactly? Barrister – Well, firstly, whether he will harm the children? Psychologist – There is nothing to suggest that Jeffrey is capable or has any intention of harming the pupils. No more so than any other member of staff. Barrister – Secondly, the head teacher and the board of governors has suggested that actions such as Jeffrey's break in are a result of his sexual orientation and that these actions may be followed up in the school environment.
Therefore, do the children need to be protected from such things? Psychologist – There is no evidence to suggest that the break in had anything to do with Jeffrey being a homosexual. There was no vandalism or graffiti indicating that it was a homophobic attack. Also, the only people who had access to Jeffrey's flat were the members of the Gay Community Association, so it is unlikely that it was sexually motivated, just a breach of trust.
Therefore, since the likelihood is that it was not sexually motivated, it is unlikely that Jeffrey would be the target of further attacks, and it would not follow him to the school, and so would not put the children in any danger. Barrister – In the case of Saunders v Scottish National Camps Ltd (1980), the tribunal took the employers view that there was a possible risk to children. Why is this case different? Psychologist – The case of Saunders involved a homosexual male who was an employee at a children's camp.
The employers believed that he posed a genuine possible risk to children and the tribunal accepted this view. However, they stated that homosexual tendencies were 'some other substantial reason for his dismissal'. Therefore, he was not actually dismissed simply on the ground that he was a homosexual. Saunders had been caught with the boys at night on two occasions, so this largely contributed to their decision. The difference with Jeffrey's case is that his dismissal is based solely on the fact that he is a homosexual.
He has never been caught in a compromising or inappropriate situation, with the pupils or with anyone else, and his employment duties have never been affected by his sexual orientation. Barrister – It was also stated in Saunders that he should not have been employed in a close proximity with children. Do you think this should apply to homosexuals generally? Like Jeffrey for instance? Psychologist – No definitely not. As I have already said, homosexuals do not pose a threat to children and they should not be denied contact.
In today's society, homosexuals are able to, and often do, adopt children. Surely this is the closest form of proximity that you can get. A survey conducted in America, by the Evan Donaldson Adoption Institute showed that 60% of adoption agencies are now accepting applications from homosexuals and researchers found that 40% of these agencies place children with those parents. Therefore, if there was any evidence to show that homosexuals would be inappropriate parents, these agencies would not encourage such adoptions.