Employment Tribunal win and compensation set for sacked Gran

 

60-year-old Gran sacked by bosses because she had breast cancer set for employment tribunal win

A 60-year-old Gran is set for a £100,000 compensation payout after taking her old bosses to an employment tribunal after she was sacked from her job after 21 years because she had cancer.

Valerie Axon, who has worked for Coral Racing for the past twenty-one years, was sacked by her bosses after informing them she had breast cancer and that she would need some time off for treatment.

Mrs Axon carried on in her role but later on discovered another lump and informed the retail operations manager, Carol Chown-Smith.

60-year-old Gran sacked by Coral bosses after 21 years because she had breast cancer

Mrs Axon worked for Coral for 21 years before being sacked for having cancer © Copyright Paul Gillett and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

The company then wrongly accused Mrs Axon of drinking whilst at work and was suspended from her retail manager role at Romford Greyhound Stadium, east London, which earned her £35,000 per year.

In November 2015, two months after she was suspended, the grandmother-of-five was sacked.

At the employment tribunal, it was heard that Mrs Axon was actually drinking cordial when she had finished her shift. The company was found guilty of disability discrimination and unfair dismissal.

Mrs Axon, of Romford, said whilst giving evidence at the tribunal: “I felt that the real reason for my dismissal was because I had breast cancer, which involved me taking sick leave of around six and a half months.”

Two Coral chiefs and Ms Chown-Smith denied the fact that cancer had played a part in Mrs Axon’s dismissal.

Judge John Goodrich ruled that Mrs Axon was not consuming alcohol whilst at work and that Ms Chown-Smith’s main motivation for Mrs Axon’s sacking was down to the fact that her cancer had returned and would need more time off work.

“My family and I have been devastated emotionally and financially by my dismissal and it was an ordeal going to the employment tribunal,” said Mrs Axon.

Valerie added how delighted she was to have received justice and hoped that her case would be an inspiration to other employees faced with the same discrimination in the workplace.

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Employment tribunal win for Thomas Cook pilot

Pilot takes employers to employment tribunal after dismissal threat for refusing to fly whilst fatigued

A Thomas Cook airline captain who took his employers to an employment tribunal, has won his case and accepted an apology from the company.

Captain Mike Simkins, who’s from the UK, was suspended for six months by Thomas Cook Airlines and threatened with dismissal for refusing to fly the Boeing 767 due to fatigue.

Mr Simkins took the company to an employment tribunal after being threatened with dismissal and won his case.

Pilot takes employers to employment tribunal after dismissal threat for refusing to fly whilst fatigued

Employment tribunal win for Thomas Cook pilot © Copyright Mike Kirby and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

 

Mr Simkins is a member of the British Airline Pilots’ Association (BALPA), who said that Mr Simkins refused to fly “after three extremely early starts in a row, including one 18-hour day, and what would have been a 19-hour day to follow.”

BALPA said that Thomas Cook’s fatigue monitoring system revealed that due to the number of duties Mr Simkins had already carried out, if he had taken the flight he refused, he would have landed and his performance loss would have been estimated to being something similiar to that of a person four times over the legal alcohol flying limit.

Head of flight safety for BALPA, Rob Hunter, said: “Not only is it reasonable to refuse to fly when fatigued, it is absolutely necessary.”

It is against the law for a pilot to operate an aeroplane whilst suffering from fatigue, or feels that they may become fatigued.

According to Mr Hunter, Captain Simkins ought to have been applauded by Thomas Cook for informing them of his fatigue, rather than disciplined.

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Employment tribunal victory for beauty therapist struggling with childcare arrangements

The woman took her former employees to an employment tribunal over unfair dismissal and sex discrimination

 
A former employee at a fitness centre in Carlise, who took her old firm to an employment tribunal for unfair dismissal following changes made to flexible working hours, has won her case and been awarded over £18,000.

The employment tribunal ruled that Emma Holt, who was a beauty therapist at the Bannatyne Fitness Centre in Carlisle, was unfairly dismissed and suffered sex discrimination, after she was made redundant over a disagreement about childcare arrangements.

The woman took her former employees to an employment tribunal over unfair dismissal and sex discrimination

Employment tribunal victory for beauty therapist struggling with childcare arrangements © Copyright Colin Smith and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

Emma had worked at the centre for nearly 10 years and had a flexible working arrangement with her employers. She worked Monday to Friday for childcare reasons and would only work on a weekend if it was to cover for a sick colleague, or for other special circumstances, as she struggled to arrange childcare for her son.

At the start of 2016, Emma was told by senior managers that she had to work weekends but she refused. She did however look into paid childcare options but none were available in her area for weekend care.

The employment tribunal heard that Emma made a formal complaint but no meaningful investigation was carried out by senior managers and she was eventually made redundant.

“Enforcing a change to my work pattern is breaching my flexible work agreement. I do feel this is unfair on the grounds that I have worked continually for the company and with very little absence over the 10 years, for either myself or my child,” Emma told her former employer.

Holt won her tribunal case on the grounds she was unfairly dismissed and suffered sex discrimination but her claim that she was victimised by her former employers was refused.

Holt was awarded £18,399 in total – £10,399 for unfair dismissal and £8,000 for injury to feelings.

Her former employer admitted unfair dismissal but refused to accept the sex discrimination charges.

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Former VIP protection officer awarded over £450,000 by employment tribunal

The ex-officer took Cleveland Police to an employment tribunal over race discrimination

A former VIP protection officer who took Cleveland Police to an employment tribunal over claims of racial discrimination, has won his case and been awarded £457,664 in damages.

The employment tribunal ruled last year that Nadeem Saddique, who in the past was responsible for guarding members of the Royal Family, George Bush and Tony Blair, was subjected to race discrimination and victimisation from colleagues and senior officers with whom he worked with.

Former VIP officer wins employment tribunal case over race discrimination

Scales of Justice © Copyright Mike Kirby and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

Over the past two days, a remedy hearing has been underway in Teesside, to determine how much compensation PC Saddique should be awarded.

Mr Saddique’s barrister, Joanne Woodward, argued that the case was one of the worst to be brought before the court, partly down to the conduct of Cleveland Police when Mr Saddique fist complained to his superiors and as a result tried for £628,000 in compensation.

“There was a professional standards old guard who didn’t think race discrimination was important and branded all complainants as liars, money grabbers or deluded,” said barrister Woodward.

Richard Oulton, for Cleveland Police, claims that the force has listened to the findings of the tribunal and efforts are being made to change things. He said: “There was a sincere and full and early apology.”

“We have reviewed many of our policies as a result of this case and as part of our Everyone Matters project have delivered training sessions on equality, diversity and human rights and cultural awareness to the wider organisation,” said a spokesperson for Cleveland Police.

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