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Employee wins sex discrimination claim after being asked by boss to attend a meeting because the client likes ‘pretty women’

Landmark case of Miss E N v G. & M.J. Crouch & Son Limited, where a worker’s victory against workplace discrimination sheds light on gender bias and harassment issues. Tribunal’s findings and the ongoing pursuit of justice for equality in the workplace.

In Miss E N v G. & M.J. Crouch & Son Limited a worker at G and MJ Crouch and Son, also known as Crouch Recovery, won a claim for sex discrimination after being asked by her boss to attend a meeting because a client supposedly preferred ‘pretty women’.

Miss E N, an employee at the vehicle recovery company, filed tribunal claims for sexual harassment, sex discrimination, harassment relating to sex, and unfair dismissal.

During the tribunal, it was revealed that her manager, Mr AC, had sent a WhatsApp message stating that a client would be attending a meeting, and she should join because “he likes pretty women”. In response, Miss E N asserted her role in looking after the customer and expressed that she wouldn’t attend solely as a “pretty face”.

Mr AC’s reply, “calm down Royder! OK babes”, referenced a prior occasion where he had mockingly referred to her as Emma Royd, resulting in the client addressing her by that name in an email.

Additional details of Miss EN’s claim, which have recently surfaced, include several instances where she felt discriminated against or harassed due to her sex. One such incident involved a promised company car that was never provided, which Miss EN interpreted as direct discrimination.

Upon her resignation, Miss EN alleged that Mr AC had pressured her into believing she would be supported and compensated for her loyalty and contributions over the years.

In the judgment, Judge Rachel Broughton dismissed most of Miss EN’s claims except for sex discrimination, noting that the “pretty woman” comment would not have been made to a male employee. She emphasized that Mr AC’s remark was not affectionate but rather sarcastic and diminishing, reducing Miss EN’s value to the business.

The tribunal concluded that male employees would not have been subjected to similar comments about their physical appearance or been chosen to attend meetings based on attractiveness.

A hearing to determine the compensation for Miss EN will be scheduled for a later date.

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