CHAIR' AT BOTTOM OF TEACHER'S SEX BIAS CLAIM
The deputy head of a large comprehensive was forced to sit in a chair
that made rude noises every time she moved, an employment tribunal was
Sue Storer, 48, claimed that her requests for a new chair were
repeatedly ignored and that she was "victimised, harassed and bullied"
because she was a woman. Mrs Storer told the tribunal that her two
joint deputy heads, who were both men, were given new "executive"
chairs without having to ask, whereas she continually had to apologise
to pupils, parents and other teachers for the noises.
She resigned from her £48,000-a-year post at Bedminster Down Secondary
School in Bristol claiming more than £1 million, based on lost earnings
and loss of pension, against Bristol City Council for constructive
dismissal and sex discrimination.
|HOW HR2all CAN HELP
At first glance this claim - £1 million for a "farting chair" - appears
ridiculous. However read the story again and other glaring issues
become apparent. For example:
If these questions have raised alarm bells in your head; if you're
wondering exactly what the statutory procedures are for dealing with
grievance and disciplinary issues; if performing a risk assessment when
a new member of staff joins your business wouldn't have occurred to
you; or if you have no idea what an equal opportunities policy should
say, let alone have one; then you need help from HR2all today!
- Did Mrs Storer put her grievance in writing? If
so, were statutory
procedures followed when dealing with it? If not, any employment
tribunal award may be automatically increased.
- Did her boss regularly appraise the performance
of Mrs Storer? In which
case, why weren't the issues of extra work and her management style
- Should her boss have pursued statutory
disciplinary procedures in relation to Mrs Storer's management of other
members of staff?
- Is there an equal opportunities policy in
place, and is it followed?
- Was a risk assessment on Mrs Storer's working
area performed at the
start of her employment as this may have highlighted issues with the
chair before her very first "fart".