The EAT has held a belief that biological sex is immutable to be a ‘philosophical belief’ protected under the Equality Act. However this was a different issue to how far the claimant had the right to manifest her belief.
The EAT said that a requirement that the belief be worthy of respect in a democratic society only excluded the most extreme beliefs akin to Nazism or totalitarianism or which espouse violence and hatred in the gravest of forms.
However the EAT emphasised that transgender people have Equality Act rights against discrimination and harassment. The EAT’s decision did not mean that those like the claimant with gender-critical beliefs could ‘misgender’ trans persons with impunity. Calling a trans woman a man may be unlawful harassment, depending on the facts.