Firearms officer Nadeem Sadique wins Employment Tribunal victimisation claim

hmctsA firearms officer has succeeded in his claims against his police force after an Employment Tribunal found that he had been harassed because of his race, discriminated against, and victimised.

PC Nadeem Sadique brought his Employment Tribunal claims against Cleveland Police after he alleged that colleagues had made derogatory remarks about him because of his race and that he had been treated less favourably by colleagues because of his race and religion.

The claim came to the Employment Tribunal earlier this year, with PC Sadique – who is the only Black and Minority Ethnic (“BME”) officer in the Cleveland Police’s firearms unit and had previously guarded the Royal family and former Prime Minister Tony Blair – making the following allegations:

  • That he had been called “just a P***” by a colleague in the firearms unit
  • That he had been referred to as a “black c***” by an inspector in Cleveland Police force
  • That his complaints about the conduct towards him had not been investigated properly by Cleveland Police’s professional standards department
  • That a colleague in the firearms unit had displayed an English Defence League sticker on the holster of his weapon
  • That his VIP firearms status had been removed and never returned.
  • That he had been considered a security risk at times, simply because he was Muslim; and
  • That there had been a culture of bullying and harassment in the firearms department by certain individuals

The Employment Tribunal found in PC Sadique’s favour in his claims for direct discrimination, harassment, and victimisation, finding that there were 19 instances of victimisation by individuals against PC Saddique, and another 11 instances of direct discrimination against the firearms officer.

Employment Judge Garnon, who chaired the 10-day full merits hearing at the Employment Tribunal, found that Chief Constable of Cleveland Police Jacqui Cheer had and her deputy Iain Spittal had not acted in a directly racist way but were responsible for trusting senior colleagues to investigate the complaints of racism ‘without enquiry’.

Employment Judge Garnon also criticised Cleveland Police’s decision to appoint the then-head of the professional standards department Darren Best to draw up an action plan for the racism, as the professional standards development had been identified

Chris Hadrill, a specialist employment solicitor at Redmans, commented: “Organisations must ensure that they are careful to investigate any complaints made by employees quickly and efficiently, and ensure that any investigations are not only fair but seen to be fair; otherwise, they may find that they are subject to an Employment Tribunal claim for victimisation.”