Thursday 27 June 2019

Lesbian gets €8,000 after colleague said she was 'not normal' if she didn't want men

The Workplace Relations Commission
The Workplace Relations Commission

Gordon Deegan

A lesbian worker at a large retailer/service station operator has been awarded €8,000 after a co-worker told her she was "not a normal person" and asked her why she didn't want men.

Workplace Relations Commission adjudication officer Patsy Doyle found the woman's employer did discriminate against the woman in respect of harassment and sexual harassment on the grounds of her sexuality.

She was left hurt and humiliated over the words directed towards her by a work colleague, Mr A.

Evidence had also been found of a "workplace culture where casual talk on highly personal and sensitive issues was permitted without redirection".

Ms Doyle has also directed that the retailer secure a written apology from Mr A "for the hurt and humiliation caused to the complainant".

The retail worker also alleged that Mr A attributed mental health issues to gay people in her presence and also claimed that a colleague told her that in a conversation Mr A had linked the origin of homosexuality to child abuse.

The retailer refuted all claims of discrimination and/or harassment, pointing out Mr A was disciplined after an internal investigation into the four incidents.

Irish Independent

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