Christian magistrate suspended from NHS Trust over gay adoption comments

Richard Page said children were 'better off with a man and a woman as adopted parents than with same-sex couples'

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The Independent Online

A Christian magistrate who was sacked after voicing his opposition to adoption by gay parents has been suspended from an NHS Trust. 

Richard Page said in an interview that children "were better off with a man and a woman as adopted parents than with same-sex couples".

Mr Page has been suspended from the board of the Kent and Medway NHS and social care partnership trust until an investigation into his comments is carried out.

In a letter confirming his suspension, NHS board chairman Andrew Ling said Mr Page's comments were likely to "further undermine the confidence staff, particularly Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered staff, have in the leadership of the Trust".

Reacting to the suspension, the 69-year-old, who has worked in the field of mental health for 20 years, said: "Last week, the Prime Minister distributed an Easter video in which he commended Christians and the church for their vital role in society, stating that we are a Christian country and should be proud of it.

"However, his Government has brought in laws which effectively silence Christians and remove them from the public square.

"It would appear no longer possible to be a Christian, to state what the Bible actually says and what the church has believed for 2,000 years, and maintain a role in public life in today's Britain."

He added: "The Trust says in his [Mr Ling's] letter that it is committed to 'challenge discrimination and treat everyone fairly and impartially' - all evidence to the contrary.

"What about treating my views, held by billions of Christians around the world, equally and fairly?"

Additional reporting by Press Association