Employment tribunal cases in the news this week – 03.02.2014 to 09.02.2014

MoJIn the latest of our series of posts on employment tribunal cases in the news this week, we take a look at ten employment tribunal cases that have made the headlines since 3 February 2014.

  1. BBC Arabic ‘civil war’ runs up £65,000 bill – The BBC has spent more than £65,000 on legal wrangles with staff at BBC Arabic, according to figures seen by Broadcast. The Global News division was hit by 10 employment disputes from nine individuals between 1 April 2010 and 15 July 2013, which resulted in compensation and settlement payments of £48,363. It paid a further £16,727 in barrister fees (Broadcast Now)
  2. Optical Express manager ‘asked colleague to rate attractiveness of female workers’ – A senior manager at Optical Express alleged to have branded a disabled employee a ‘fat ugly size 22 cripple’ asked a colleague to rate the attractiveness of female colleagues on a scale of one to ten, a tribunal heard (The Manchester Evening News)
  3. Arbroath bingo boss wins jackpot at employment tribunal – An Arbroath bingo hall general manager has won over £44,000 for being unfairly dismissed. Marie Watkins (44), of Commerce Street, had worked for the Gala Coral Group for 20 years and was sacked because she was not thought by the company to be capable of fulfilling new responsibilities (The Courier)
  4. Police win forced retirement tribunal claim – Five police forces could face paying out millions of pounds after officers who were forced to retire after 30 years won an age discrimination claim. Nottinghamshire, West Midlands, Devon and Cornwall, North Wales and South Wales officers were among hundreds made to retire under regulation A19 (BBC)
  5. Soldier appeals for greater damages after sergeant’s racist insult – A former soldier claiming damages for racist slurs from an army sergeant was not the victim of ‘very serious’ abuse, Ministry of Defence (MoD) lawyers have claimed. African-born William Kemeh, 34, from Aldershot, is claiming compensation from the MoD after he was called ‘dumb’ and told to ‘shut up’ with a reference to the colour of his skin by a senior NCO and, separately, by a civilian butcher while serving as an Army private in the Falklands (Get Hampshire)
  6. Media Wales denies unfair dismissal – Matthew Wall, a business development manager at Media Wales, was sacked last year after sales bosses said they discovered emails he had sent to clients, offering free adverts in return for “helping him out”, the tribunal was told (Wales Online)
  7. Shropshire gardener’s unfair dismissal claim is backed – A landscape gardener sacked from his job after absent-mindedly driving off with a “bag of bolts” in his van when leaving a high-security Ministry of Defence site – has had his unfair dismissal claim backed by a top employment judge (The Shropshire Star)
  8. Former Ludlow clerk who won claim will not get her job back – The decision to go with a cash settlement rather than reinstate former Ludlow Town Council clerk Veronica Calderbank was made behind closed doors last week, but it was made public at a full council meeting last night (The Shropshire Star)
  9. Sainsbury matriarch ‘would be appalled’ at cost-cutting – Lord Sainsbury of Turville, the former Labour science minister and former chairman of the supermarket empire, was accused of being “highly disrespectful to his mother” as he sought to cut the £600,000 bill for running her household, an employment tribunal was told (The Times)
  10. Industrial tribunal told of ‘appalling behaviour’ of pupils at Oratory School – A former teacher at an independent school told an employment tribunal how the appalling behaviour of some pupils and the failure of headteachers to act forced her to quit her job. Rachel Ashley, a former ‘housemother’ at Oratory School, in Woodcote, said one boy had made his own weapons, filmed himself skinning live cats, trapped and pounded birds to death and started a fire at a boathouse (Get Reading)