Nowadays Age Is No Barrier To Keeping Your Staff

Nowadays Age Is No Barrier To Keeping Your Staff

A recent case which came before an Employment Tribunal illustrates how careful employers of all staff – including household and domestic – have to be in assessing if a person’s age is potentially an issue when their future employment is being considered.

In the case in question an 89 year old former medical secretary was dismissed and won £200,000 in compensation.

The woman was dismissed when she was 86 years old after she failed to upload details of cancer patients awaiting non-urgent breast reconstruction.

She claimed she had never been trained to use a new system, which led to the mistakes.

At Reading Employment Tribunal the woman claimed she had been dismissed on the basis of her age and that there had been unpleasant and derogatory remarks made concerning her health and age.

The Judge ruled that her dismissal was “tainted by discrimination”. He found that her grievances had not been addressed and that she had been treated differently to other staff because sufficient training had not been offered to her.

“Instead of the respondent addressing that issue directly and either training her and then requiring her to do the role as directed the claimant was dismissed. This was because of her age.” Said Judge  Andrew Gumbiti-Zimuto

In a remedy judgement made recently the Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust was ordered to pay Jolly £200,000 in compensation (£129,375 net of tax) within 14 days.

Net of tax, this consisted of: a £12,956.54 basic award; a £71.472.64 compensatory award; £20,000 for injury to feelings; £350 for loss of statutory rights; £1,727.52 for the organisation’s failure to provide written reasons for dismissal; and £22,868.16 for failing to comply with the ACAS code of practice.


The Graham Agency keeping you informed.