EU Court: Sexual orientation cannot be a reason not to conclude freelance contracts

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THE sexual orientation of a self-employed person in European Union cannot be a reason for refusing to conclude a contract, even if national laws provide otherwise, ruled today the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU).

The court case concerned her complaint by a Polish citizen who worked for seven years at a public television channel in Poland with a series of freelance contracts.

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The his shifts were cancelled unilaterally and no new contract was concluded immediately after publication by the self-employed person on the Internet of a Christmas music video with his partner in which he promoted tolerance, the CJEU said in a press release.

The Polish court hearing the lawsuit asked the DEE to clarify whether an EU legislation for equal treatment at work it also applies to staff working on contracts as external collaborators and whether the Community directive annuls national legislation allowing the refusal of a self-employed contract based on sexual orientation.

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Today’s ruling clarifies that EU anti-discrimination law applies to the self-employed, as the law “seeks to eliminate… all discriminatory barriers to access to the means of livelihood and the ability to contribute to society through work, regardless of the legal form it is given”.

In its decision, according to the Athens News Agency, the Court ruled that the current concept of “conditions for access to employment, self-employed activities or work (…), must be understood in a broad sense, covering access to any professional activity, whatever its nature and characteristics”, regardless of the “form of salaried and self-employed activity, whatever the legal form under which this activity is carried out”.

The CJEU also held that the refusal of contracts to independent professionals on grounds of sexual orientation under Polish national law “it could not be considered necessary for the purposes of securing freedom of contract in a democratic society’.

The Polish court must now resolve the case in accordance with the CJEU ruling, which is also binding on other national courts dealing with similar issues.

Source: News Beast

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