UK: Magistrate who objected to gay parents remains suspended

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A Kent magistrate who was told he could return to work after completing an equality course, having objected to a gay couple adopting a child, remains suspended.

Richard Page, a Christian father of two who serves in the Family Court and also works an NHS manager, insisted during an adoption case that it would be better for a child to be placed “with a mother and father” than with their prospective parents, who are gay.

He made the comments in a closed-doors meeting with other magistrates, who reported him to the Judicial Conduct Investigations Office.

The 68-year-old was told he would not be allowed to return to Family Court until he had undergone training in equality law, which he completed last week.

But KentOnline reports a Ministry of Justice spokesman was this week unable to confirm when the father-of-three will be allowed to return to the courtroom.

Mr Page, who has himself been a foster parent, said: “The point of having three magistrates is so that we can all bring our own experience and opinions to the table when considering cases.”

He added: “I expressed my views based on my beliefs and was shocked to hear of the complaint.

“Often magistrates disagree and the view of the majority is taken but you forget about it when you leave court – something you are told to do.”