Tuesday, March 04, 2008

British Teenager Wins Discrimination Award: Fired for Being Too Young

As mandatory retirement laws in the West fall by the wayside, will the practice of age-discrimination against the very young be next on the chopping block?

A U.K. employment tribunal's decision lends credence to suggestion that it may well be.

Times Online reports today:

A 19-year-old woman who claimed that she was sacked for being too young has been awarded more than £16,000 in compensation after winning a ground-breaking case against her former employer.

It is the first time since age discrimination regulations came into force in October 2006 that they have been properly tested in a case involving young workers.

Leanne Wilkinson, who was then 18, claimed that she suffered age discrimination when she was dismissed from her job as an administrative assistant at Springwell Engineering in Newcastle upon Tyne.

She claimed the company had told her that she was too young for the post and that they needed an older person with more experience.

An employment tribunal ruled in her favour, concluding that she had been discriminated against on the grounds of age. The tribunal said that the company had relied on a “stereotypical assumption that capability equals experience and experience equals older age . . . age was the predominant reason for the decision to dismiss”.

...Miss Wilkinson was awarded £16,081.12, of which £5,000 was for injury to feelings.

- Garry J. Wise, Toronto

Visit our Toronto Law Firm website: www.wiselaw.net


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