Want to talk to an expert employment law solicitor?

You'll receive a callback from a specialist within an hour

hmctsIn this article, Chris Hadrill, a specialist employment solicitor at Redmans, will analyse the case of McAuley v Auto Alloys Foundry Limited and Taylor [1004] IT/62824/93, a case in which comments such as “typical Irish” and “typical thick Paddy” were held to constitute unlawful discrimination.

Summary

The Industrial Tribunal (as it was then) held comments such as “typical Irish” and “typical thick Paddy” towards him by his co-workers, as well as other anti-Irish comments, were discriminatory, and that his dismissal had been because he “would not take Irish jokes lying down”. The Tribunal awarded the Claimant, Trevor McAuley, compensation of £5,902, including £2,500 as injury to feelings.

The facts

Trevor McAuley, an Irishman, was employed by Auto Alloys Foundry Limited (“Auto Alloys”) as a general machinist from September 1991 to the summer of 1993. From the start of his employment with Auto Alloys Mr McAuley was subject to various anti-Irish insults and jokes, with those comments including “typical Irish” (said to him when he made a mistake); “how could a Paddy do that?”; and “typical thick Paddy”. As a result of these jokes Mr McAuley complained to the managing of director of Auto Alloys that he was being harassed by his colleagues and, following this, he was moved to a different job. However, following his job move Mr McAuley was subjected to more Irish jokes and insults from other colleagues. In December 1992 Mr McAuley was signed off work sick with stress and in the summer of 1993 he was dismissed by Auto Alloys.

Following his dismissal, Mr McAuley made a claim for discrimination on the grounds of national origin against Auto Alloys Foundry Limited.

The Tribunal’s decision

The Industrial Tribunal upheld his claim, holding that the anti-Irish comments and insults constituted less favourable treatment as a result of Mr McAuley’s national origin. The Tribunal further found that Mr McAuley had been dismissed “principally because he was an Irishman who would not take Irish jokes lying down, in other words, he did not ‘fit in'”.

The Industrial Tribunal awarded Mr McAuley £5,902 as compensation, including a figure of £2,500 in respect of the injury to feelings that he had suffered.

Why is this case important for you?

Although a little outdated, this case is important for both employers and employees. With regards to employers, it demonstrates that employers must take effective steps to control their employees and to prevent them from making discriminatory and/or harassing comments about their colleagues. A failure to do so can lead to potentially costly and time-consuming Employment Tribunal litigation. With regards to employees, if an employee is suffering discrimination at work then they should make a complaint about it to the relevant person at the organisation – if no action, or inadequate action, is undertaken then they may wish to consider pursuing an Employment Tribunal claim to assert their rights.

About Chris Hadrill

Chris is a specialist employment lawyer at Redmans. He specialises in contentious and non-contentious employment matters, including breach of contract claims, compromise agreements and Employment Tribunal cases. He writes on employment law matters on a variety of websites, including Direct 2 Lawyers, Lawontheweb.co.uk, LegalVoice, the Justice Gap and his own blog. Contact Chris by emailing him at chadrill@redmans.co.uk

Want to talk to an expert employment law solicitor?

You'll receive a callback from a specialist within an hour

Share →

Our awards

Request a callback

Your name

Your email

Your telephone number

Contact us

Please feel free to discuss your own position and concerns. Contact your nearest office on:

T: 020 3397 3603
E: enquiries@redmans.co.uk
W: www.redmans.co.uk

Testimonials

4.67 Average

66 Reviews

Anonymous

As with All solicitors advice without consequence but understood and communicated my legal position

Posted 6 days ago

Anonymous

Prompt, professional and excellent service.

Posted 1 week ago

Dominic C

Excellent service, prompt and helpful

Posted 1 week ago

Anonymous

I found Redman’s to be very efficient and got me the best deal available in the short time scale that was available.

Posted 2 weeks ago

Victor L

Very professional. Provided excellent advice on my Settlement agreement.

Posted 2 weeks ago

Anonymous

Professional from start to finish.

Posted 2 weeks ago

Oliver W

Excellent service provided by Redmans, will certainly consider using again.

Posted 2 weeks ago

Melanie H

Very professional and extremely personable service. Thank you very much.

Posted 4 weeks ago

Anonymous

I found Chris to be very approachable and easy to speak with about complex matters. He took action quickly and his updates to me, as his client, were prompt. I would recommend Chris and the team at Redmans without hesitation.

Posted 4 weeks ago

Anonymous

Good advice

Posted 4 weeks ago

Anonymous

Overall happy with the service provided by Chris and Rana.

Posted 4 weeks ago

Anonymous

Chris and Rana provide a great service, very informed, diligent and care about your result, would recommend Redmans

Posted 4 weeks ago

David W

A speedy efficient friendly service, I would definitely recommend Redmans Solicitors for processing Settlement Agreements.

Posted 4 weeks ago

Anonymous

Both Rana and Chris were fantastic. From the first phone call I was confident my matter was in good hands. I was not disappointed. I would highly recommend Redmans. Thank you again for all of your support and advice.

Posted 1 month ago

Federico S

Great advices and communication. Through Redmana I obtained match more than what I thought. Highly recommended

Posted 1 month ago

Tom G

A good and efficient service with the required legal advice provided for a settlement agreement.

Posted 1 month ago

Francis T

The solicitor I used was Chris Hadrill, who I found extremely professional and I felt that he made me feel at ease, considering the subject matter he was assisting me with.

Posted 1 month ago

Anonymous

Chris provided excellent assistance with the negotiation of my settlement agreement. From start to finish, I was consitently updated and advised on the best course of action to take. I would highly recommend Chris and Redmans Solicitors.

Posted 1 month ago

Anonymous

They are busy people but manage well so generally I would recommend them.

Posted 1 month ago

Anonymous

Very efficient and professional service from my first phone call making an enquiry. Timescales of the matter in hand were met and within the agreed budget. Would highly recommend Redmans

Posted 1 month ago

Lisa B

Really very good service, always available to answer questions, provide my with any information I needed to make informed decisions.

Posted 1 month ago