Charity denies whistleblower’s sacking claims

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The League Against Cruel Sports was one of the major charities to campaign against fox hunting. It is now being in a legal battle linked to unethical pension fund investments

An animal welfare charity said it did not sack its head of policy because he spoke out about pension fund investments in firms using animal testing

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18th June 2018 by Susan Smith 0 Comments

An animal charity has denied it sacked its former head of policy for telling staff the pension fund was investing in companies involved in animal testing.

The League Against Cruel Sports is in the midst of a legal battle with Jordi Casamitjana, who left the charity in April this year.

Casamitjana is currently crowd funding to raise money for legal representation. On his fundraising page, which is currently sitting at £4,672 towards a £5,000 target, he states: “I am an ethical vegan who was dismissed by an animal welfare charity after I blew the whistle that their pension fund was being invested in companies involved in animal testing.”

Later, he adds: “When I wrote to my colleagues to tell them that their pension was being invested in non-ethical funds, and that there were alternatives to the single alternative that the company was suggesting, I was sacked.  I was given no appeal hearing.”

Casamitjana states he hopes the case can be used to add ethical veganism to the beliefs protected under the UK Equality Act.

However, in a statement on its website the League Against Cruel Sports interim chief executive Andrew Knott denied Casamitjana was dismissed for whistleblowing about the pension fund.

Knott stated: "Up until 2015, League staff were automatically enrolled into an ethical pension fund, but we understand that the FCA, the body responsible for pensions, changed the regulations and the fund became ineligible. We followed financial advice and changed our pension, while still offering the chance for individuals to change their own fund to an ethical fund.

"Our former colleague Mr Casamitjana did raise concerns about the pension fund… as a result Mr Casamitjana was able to transfer his own pension to an ethical fund within a few weeks.”

Knott continued: “Mr Casamitjana was not dismissed because he raised concerns about the pension, either internally or externally, so there is no substance to his claims that he was whistleblowing. All staff were informed about the situation and the processes in place to enable them to make their own choices. The reason for his dismissal is different from that which he states but clearly this is confidential information which we are respecting.”