In a 5-2 decision, the judiciary ruled that the UK courts had unfairly given greater weight to the airlines desire to "maintain a certain corporate image,” in lieu of Coptic Christian Nadia Eweida's freedom to express her religion.
In the binding ruling, the ECHR cited that the airline itself had later amended the uniform code to allow visible religious clothing and symbols, and that before that, it had allowed members of other faiths to wear religious symbols, such as turbans, without an effect on its image. As a result, the UK was ordered to pay Eweida 2,000 euros, and to cover her legal costs.
During the same hearing, the court sided with a hospital that asked a British nurse to remove her cross, citing "clinical safety” in the workplace. It also ruled that the religious freedom of a civil registrar and a sex counselor, who were dismissed for raising religious objections to working with same sex couples, was not breached because they refused to enforce State-mandated equality measures.
Images: European Court of Human Rights