Legal Updates

Employment – Sex Discrimination

In the case of Thomatheram v Leicester City Council and others [2006],an employee was unsuccessful in his application to become an area manager in charge of adult learning or youth services following a restructuring process. The employee became an employee of the employer when it became the relevant education authority for the community centre of which the employee was head.

After his unsuccessful application for the two roles within the organisation, the employee was issued with a redundancy notice. However, his employment was continued by virtue of the fact that he was offered a temporary post as a project partnership manager. His salary was protected at its former scale.

The employee presented his original application to the Employment Tribunal complaining of sex and/or race discrimination. The employee contended that the successful applicants for the area manager positions did not meet the required specifications for the posts and were weaker candidates.

The employer said that it had adopted a full and fair selection and recruitment process. It said that the candidates that were selected for the positions were better qualified and better suited to the posts than the employee was. The Tribunal dismissed the employee’s complaints.

The employee then appealed to the Employment Appeals Tribunal. He claimed that the Tribunal had failed to make material findings of fact relating to the alleged discrimination in the failure to appoint him to either of the two positions he applied for. The appeal was allowed.  The Employment Appeals Tribunal held that:-

  • The recruitment process involved the satisfaction of the required specifications for the positions applied for.
  • The Tribunal  had a duty to make findings on whether the issues raised by the employee, namely that there had been shortfalls between the successful candidates' satisfaction of some of the elements of the required specifications, had been made out or not.
  • In the circumstances of this case, the Tribunal  had not discharged that responsibility


The matter would have to be considered by a fresh Tribunal.

Please contact us for advice on employment law at enquiries@rtcoopers.com or Visit http://www.rtcoopers.com/practice_employment.php

© RT COOPERS, 2006. This Briefing Note does not provide a comprehensive or complete statement of the law relating to the issues discussed nor does it constitute legal advice. It is intended only to highlight general issues. Specialist legal advice should always be sought in relation to particular circumstances.   

 

 

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