Folau claims his sacking is a 'restraint of trade'
NEWS: Sacked rugby star Israel Folau has broadened his legal case against Rugby Australia, arguing his dismissal over controversial comments was “an unreasonable restraint of trade” because it stopped him playing the sport.
Super Rugby’s record try-scorer, who was on a Aus$1 million-a-year (US$690 000), four-year deal, was fired in May for a controversial social media post.
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Those that are living in Sin will end up in Hell unless you repent. Jesus Christ loves you and is giving you time to turn away from your sin and come to him. _______________ Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these , adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revelings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. Galatians 5:19-21 KJV _______________ Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. Acts 2:38 KJV _______________ And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: Acts 17:30 KJV _______________
The devoutly Christian fullback launched action against the governing body and NSW Rugby this month, claiming he was unlawfully dismissed under legislation that disallows sackings because of a person’s religion.
He is reportedly seeking Aus$10 million, including for lost sponsorship and marketing opportunities, a sum that could cause major headaches for Rugby Australia.
The governing body insists his dismissal was purely contractual, and a trial has been set for February unless court-ordered mediation in December is successful.
In a 25-page statement of claim, lodged this week and made available Thursday, Folau also argues that a tribunal ruling to sack him was unenforceable because it put unreasonable restraints on his ability to play.
“Mr. Folau can no longer play Rugby Union at an international level [because he is only eligible to play for the Wallabies] or for an Australian team in the Super Rugby competition and [the penalty] is therefore an unreasonable restraint of trade, contrary to public policy, and void,” the document said.
The claim noted that Folau became a born-again Christian in December 2017 and that he felt he had “a mission and duty to spread what he believes to be the word of God”.
It said the social media platforms he used to do this “were substantially unrelated to Rugby Union” and his postings were done in his own time and not in the workplace.
“The conduct was not unlawful,” it stated, adding that in Australia there was a governing principle that people were free to share their religious beliefs.
“It is injurious and inimical to the public interest, and therefore against public policy, for a condition in a contract of employment to allow an employer to prohibit an employee, in their own time, from having or adopting any religion or belief,” it said.
The statement of claim also said Folau had previously said he was not homophobic or bigoted, and did not have a problem with gay people.
“He believed it was a loving gesture to share passages from the Bible with others,” it added, referring to the social media post that got him fired.