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£47,000 awarded for severe transgender discrimination and harassment

Makbool Javaid

In A de Souza E Souza v Primark Stores Ltd, Miss Souza (S) is a transgender woman. An ET found that she had been subjected to harassment related to gender reassignment which included colleagues: outing S and calling her ‘Alexander’; spraying scent near S and saying ‘I can smell urine, like a men’s toilet’; saying ‘it’s a man’s voice’ and ‘deep voice’; telling an electrician he could come into the ladies toilets as ‘there  are no ladies in there’, when S was present; and, saying a prayer would be said for S as ‘she’s got evil inside her’. The ET also found that Primark had subjected S to direct gender reassignment discrimination by failing to investigate complaints properly and dealing with it appropriately, i.e. not giving S the outcome of her grievance or advising her of the right of appeal. The ET awarded S £47,433 including £25,000 for injury to feelings. The ET also recommended that a policy be adopted and communicated on the treatment of transgender staff, together with training on its application.

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