Tuesday, May 3, 2016Tesco Pay Out For Race Discrimination Claim
Sometimes you need your union to take on the bullies and Goliaths, and this outcome completely vindicates our decision says GMB.
A mixed race child who brought a race discrimination claim as a result of being stopped and searched in Tesco has received £3,000 in settlement.
The child, known as A, was stopped and searched at the Maida Vale Tesco store on 2 November 2013. A was approached by a retail assistant who prevented him from leaving the store by grabbing his arm and taking him into an office in the back of the store. A was not told why he had been stopped, or why he was being held in the back office. The duty manager at the store joined the retail assistant in the office and subjected A to a search. The search revealed A was not in possession of any items belonging to Tesco, and A was permitted to leave the store.
After the event, A felt vulnerable when entering shops, believing he had been targeted for this treatment because of his race, in particular as his white friends were not subjected to the same treatment. The indiscreet and physical nature of Tesco’s conduct was particularly upsetting for A. A’s mother contacted GMB for assistance, who in turn instructed Leigh Day to pursue a claim for race discrimination.
A commented “The way Tesco treated me was unacceptable and for a while left me constantly unnerved whenever I was in a store. I think it is absolutely fantastic that we have been able to show them this is not acceptable and that they cannot get away with these kinds of actions anymore. When we first took on the case it was like David vs Goliath and it looked like nothing would come of it; however, with the unfaltering support from GMB and Leigh Day we have been able to reach a very pleasing settlement.”
Maria Ludkin, GMB Legal Director, said "GMB is a union that won't stand for discrimination of any kind. When our member contacted us to tell us what had happened to her son, we were happy to take action. Sometimes you need your union to take on the bullies and Goliaths, and this outcome completely vindicates our decision."
A’s mother commented “My son was treated utterly appallingly. Doing nothing just wasn’t an option - there was no way that I could stomach Tesco getting away with how they treated my son because of his race. Getting reparation, and recognition for how they had wronged my son, was ‘like getting blood out of a stone’ but our efforts were worth it.”
Nick Webster, solicitor acting for A, said “It is unacceptable to treat somebody differently because of their race. Our client was particularly upset by what he felt to be the physical, high-handed manner of Tesco’s conduct and has been left scarred by the incident. Our client hopes that his actions will give others who have been subjected to this type of treatment the confidence to speak out.”
Contact: Maria Ludkin on 07956 632657 or GMB press office on 07970 863411 or 07739 182691