Discrimination Claim against Laura Ashley Settled

An ex-employee of Laura Ashley has been awarded 9,520 pounds, after a Northern Ireland employment tribunal found the company guilty of indirect discrimination.

The ex-employee – who has not been named – was the primary carer of a child with an attention disorder and had worked at the store for five years. While employed at Laura Ashley, she had an arrangement whereby she was allowed time to collect her child from school.

However, when a new rota system was implemented, this arrangement was cancelled and the ex-employee was told that unless she accepted the new rota system she would be out of a job. The company was able to offer her an alternative position with fewer hours, but this was considered to be unacceptable.

As a result of the changes, the ex-employee took a total of four months off work suffering from stress and, at the tribunal it was agreed that the company’s new rota disproportionately affected female employees in comparison to male employees.

The tribunal awarded the ex-employee 6,000 pounds for injury to feelings, 880 pounds for loss of earnings and 2,640 for future losses.

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