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David Campanale head shot.png
Image: David Campanale on X
David Campanale head shot.png
Image: David Campanale on X
Church News

Lib Dem Christian's 'discrimination' is an isolated event, party claims

by Premier Journalist

The Liberal Democrats have insisted it is easy to be a Christian in their party, despite one candidate claiming he was ousted for his faith.

David Campanale was the party’s prospective parliamentary candidate for the south London constituency of Sutton & Cheam until he was deselected. He is due to be replaced this week.

The acclaimed former BBC reporter was allegedly ousted as a result of his faith. Mr Campanale previously told Premier how he had been bullied and harassed because of his Christian beliefs.

His supporters have urged the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) to carry out an independent investigation into “multiple alleged breaches of equality law and our party constitution”.

Lizzie Jewkes, director of the Liberal Democrat Christian Forum (LDCF), said the LDCF is also calling on the EHRC to investigate.

She told Premier Christian News she hopes the way that Mr Campanale has been treated “never happens to anyone ever again”.

However, the grandmother and entrepreneur, who first stood as a parliamentary candidate in 1992, believes the backlash against Mr Campanale is an entirely localised problem.

Mrs Jewkes, who works very closely with Christians in Politics, said neither CIP nor LDCF are reporting similar issues, despite the increasing media coverage of Christians coming unstuck over Identity Politics.

She said: “Having been a Liberal Democrat since 1984 and having been a Christian all that time, I have never had any of these problems. We have more members than any of the other parties. A huge percentage of our MPs are Christians.”

Mrs Jewkes said: "It's entirely localised. Somebody has decided they don't like Christians, or David." It's also possible people just have another candidate in mind, she added.

The letter to the EHRC, seen by The Telegraph, claimed that there was evidence which showed “a supposedly liberal organisation allowing clear religious discrimination and hostility to thrive within its ranks”.

It said: “It suggests that Mr Campanale was driven out from his democratically elected position not because of any objective failings or wrongdoing but because a vocal group within SBLD [Sutton Borough Liberal Democrats] refused to tolerate his Christian worldview.

“Although Mr Campanale has submitted evidence of religious discrimination, harassment and victimisation perpetrated against him to party authorities at all levels over a two-year period, no appropriate action has been taken.”

The EHRC is considering the complaint.





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