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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
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Is it illegal for a colleague of mine to say the following

Resolved Question:

Is it illegal for a colleague of mine to say the following to me in a public work forum, in relation to the Scots when I and my family are Scottish?
The queen would be happy not to have to holiday in Scotland as she would then get half decent food and would also be able to shoot Scots rather than shoot birds.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 2 years ago.
Ben Jones : Hello, my name is ***** ***** it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today. Have you raised this with the employer?
Customer:

No.

Customer:

the individual is a highly respected female rising star that is on the firms Human Capital Committee and an advocate of women in the workplace

Ben Jones :

This is not illegal in a sense that for example it is not a criminal matter with which the police would get involved. However, from an employment perspective it can be seen as a discriminatory comment because it is made on grounds of someone’s nationality, which makes it potential race discrimination. This is something which can be brought to the employer’s attention and they will then decide how to deal with it. For example you can do this informally, or if you think this is a serious issue then you can also follow the grievance procedure. The employer would then investigate the allegations and decide what the most appropriate action to take in the circumstances is. It could be disciplinary action against the person accused of making the comments.

In terms of you taking personal action against this person, it is not really recommended. All you can do is make a claim for race discrimination in the employment tribunal. However, the fees are quite high and the potential compensation would be rather low as this was just an isolated incident and also not aimed directly at you.

Customer:

thank you

Ben Jones :

you are welcome

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