Sex discrimination claim receives almost £185,000 award


10 September 2021

By Josh Fresle

An estate agent has received an award of just under £185,000 in the Employment Tribunal following a claim of sex discrimination after her employer refused her request to go part-time so she could collect her baby from nursery.

Alice Thompson attempted to negotiate more flexible working hours with her employer due to childcare issues, requesting a four day working week and 5pm (rather than 6pm) finish, as her baby’s nursery would be closed by 6pm. This attempt was refused by her employer.

The Employment Tribunal heard that Ms Thompson had been excluded from an event attended by the rest of staff and was made to feel ‘like a leaver’ when going on maternity leave.

The Employment Tribunal found that Ms Thompson was put at a disadvantage by her employer because of her sex.

‘Sex’ is one of the nine ‘protected characteristics’ set out in the Equality Act 2010, the purpose of which is to promote equality and protect against discrimination on the basis of one of these characteristics. ‘Sex’ for the purposes of this Act, means a reference to a man or woman and does not include sexual orientation or gender reassignment. Sex discrimination occurs when someone is treated less favourably than others (whether directly or indirectly), because of their sex.

If you believe you have been discriminated against or have been treated unfairly or repeatedly harassed on the basis of your sexuality or for any other reason which is expressly prohibited by law such as gender, race, religion, age or disability, our employment specialists can help you in offering support and advice in any aspect of discrimination in the workplace.

This is not legal advice; it is intended to provide information of general interest about current legal issues.