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Wide-ranging recommendations permitted

In Lycée Français Charles De Gaulle v Delambre the EAT has held that an employment tribunal was entitled to impose a wide range of recommendations on a school which it found had committed age discrimination.

Ms Delambre, 34, succeeded in her claim that the school’s refusal to promote her was an unlawful act of age discrimination. She was awarded £48,000 in compensation and the tribunal, as it is permitted to do, made recommendations that the employer takes specified steps for the purpose of avoiding or reducing the adverse effect of the unlawful discrimination within a set time period. These were that the school should: (i) circulate the tribunal’s judgments to each member of its governing board and senior management team; (ii) engage a qualified HR professional to conduct a review of its existing equality-related policies and procedures to ensure they are legally compliant; and (iii) undertake a programme of formal equality and diversity training, beginning with the governors and then cascading down through the entire school. The school appealed, arguing that these recommendations were burdensome and impractical.

The EAT rejected the appeal. Tribunals have an extremely wide discretion to make recommendations. The tribunal’s recommendations in this case, given the circumstances, were entirely justified, as they were just and equitable, and practicable in terms of the effect on both Ms Delambre and the school in attempting to eliminate discrimination.

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