Victim of Anti-English Workplace Abuse Receives Substantial Damages

A certain amount of workplace banter may be tolerated, but every sensible employer is aware that it may be the thin end of a wedge leading to unlawful discrimination. In a case on point, an English lorry driver who suffered wounding verbal abuse after taking a job north of the border was awarded…

Jun 29, 2021

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A certain amount of workplace banter may be tolerated, but every sensible employer is aware that it may be the thin end of a wedge leading to unlawful discrimination. In a case on point, an English lorry driver who suffered wounding verbal abuse after taking a job north of the border was awarded substantial compensation.

The man’s line manager did not like him and referred to him in demeaning and foul-mouthed terms by reference to his nationality. During a football tournament, he was informed that he, like the England team, would soon be on a bus back to England. The manager also remarked that, when Scotland gained independence, he would have to go home, meaning return to England.

After he launched proceedings, an Employment Tribunal found that he had suffered discriminatory harassment on grounds of his nationality. His unfair dismissal claim was also upheld on the basis that an investigation into alleged misconduct on his part was inadequate. His former employer was ordered to pay him £13,306 in compensation, including £12,000 for injury to his feelings.

Use of Similar Fact Evidence in Employment Proceedings – Guideline Ruling

In a criminal context, prosecutors often rely on similar fact evidence in order to show that a defendant has a propensity to behave in a particular way – but can such evidence also be deployed in employment proceedings? The Employment Appeal Tribunal (EAT) focused on that issue in a guideline case. The case concerned an energy broker who complained to an Employment Tribunal (ET) that unlawful deductions had been made from her wages in that she had not been paid all commissions due to her. She…

Plagued by Former Employees Turned Competitors? See a Lawyer Today!

Many business owners lie awake at night worrying that senior employees may leave to set up rival operations, taking clients and confidential information with them. Such conduct is, however, highly likely to be unlawful and, as one case showed, specialist lawyers can very swiftly take steps to nip it in the bud. The case concerned a share purchase agreement (SPA), by which a consultancy group acquired the entire issued share capital of a rival company for over £6.4 million. As part of the deal,…

Racism on the Shop Floor – Employers Can Expect to Carry the Can

Some shop floors are rough and ready places where foul language abounds, but if a worker makes a racist or other discriminatory comment it is likely to be the employer who ends up carrying the legal can. An Employment Tribunal (ET) ruling underlined the necessity of keeping a lid on things and nipping such conduct in the bud. The case concerned a black machine operator who was furious that his line manager had reported him for alleged unsafe use of machinery. A fierce altercation developed…