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You Can Be Compensated for Injury to Your Feelings
If you suffer discrimination in the workplace you can be compensated for injury to your feelings as well as for your financial losses. A £12,000 award was made under that head in one striking case in which a woman was told that she was being made redundant on the same day that she put in a request for maternity leave.
The woman, who had a senior managerial role in a large company, was so upset and shocked on being told that she would lose her job that she had to go on sick leave, suffering from stress. In her absence, her bosses proactively looked for errors in her work and informed her that she faced disciplinary action. She ultimately resigned.
After she took legal advice and lodged a complaint, an Employment Tribunal (ET) found that she had been selected for redundancy because of her request for maternity leave and that the allegations of gross misconduct against her were unjustified and unsustainable. She had thus been unfairly constructively dismissed and had suffered unlawful discrimination based on her sex.
Following a further hearing, the ET noted that the circumstances of her departure from the company had resulted in a loss of confidence and mental health problems from which she took some time to recover. In the circumstances, the company was ordered to pay her a total of more than £42,000 in compensation, including the substantial award for injury to her feelings.