Gay man applies for constitutional protection against workplace discrimination

Mr Lawrence Bernard Wee Kim San, an ex-senior manager of Robinson, claims that he was harassed to leave his job because he is gay. He filed an application at the High Court for constitutional protection against workplace discrimination of homosexual
Mr Lawrence Bernard Wee Kim San, an ex-senior manager of Robinson, claims that he was harassed to leave his job because he is gay. He filed an application at the High Court for constitutional protection against workplace discrimination of homosexual men. -- TNP FILE PHOTO: JEREMY LONG 

A former Robinsons employee on Friday filed an application at the High Court for constitutional protection against the workplace discrimination of homosexual men.

Mr Lawrence Bernard Wee Kim San, 40, had previously brought a suit against his former employer in December 2012, claiming to have been harassed into resigning because he is gay. The suit has been dismissed on purely contractual grounds.

In filing the application, Mr Wee cited Article 12 of the Singapore Constitution, which states that "all persons are equal before the law and entitled to the equal protection of the law". He sought the Court to declare that this is so regardless of sexual orientation.

His lawyer M Ravi, said that there is a lack of guarantee by the courts for equal treatment under the Constitution for homosexual men, because Singapore has no legislation that prohibits employment discrimination against gays.

"This is a glaring omission," wrote Mr Wee in his affidavit. Mr Ravi said that this is especially so, given that Singapore has ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and the Convention to Eliminate All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, which would protect lesbians.

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