Deer v University of Oxford: CA 6 Feb 2015

The claimant had previously succeeded in a claim of sex discrimination against the University, her former employer. She now appealed against rejection of her claims alleging later victimisation.
Held: Two appeals succeed, and those matters remitted to the tribunal for reconsideration: ‘I do not see why not: if the appellant were able to establish that she had been treated less favourably in the way in which the procedures were applied, and the reason was that she was being victimised for having lodged a sex discrimination claim, she would have a legitimate sense of injustice which would in principle sound in damages. The fact that the outcome of the procedure would not have changed will be relevant to any assessment of any compensation, but it does not of itself defeat the substantive victimisation discrimination claim. ‘
The concept of detriment is determined from the point of view of the claimant: a detriment exists if a reasonable person would or might take the view that the employer’s conduct had in all the circumstances been to her detriment; but an unjustified sense of grievance cannot amount to a detriment.
As to the complaint that the university had victimised the Claimant by their refusal to provide the claimant with or to undertake to preserve, certain relevant documents which she had requested under the Data Protection Act, Elias LJ said: ‘it is fanciful to believe that this particular claim could succeed. The university was acting on the advice of lawyers. As the employment judge recognised, whether the advice was right or wrong, there was no basis for believing that the university had done anything other than rely upon the advice . . the only proper inference is that the university was acting in what it perceived to be its best interests in the litigation.’

Sullivan, Elias, Floyd LJJ
[2015] EWCA Civ 52
Equality Act 2010, Sex Discrimination Act 1975
England and Wales
CitedCoote v Granada Hospitality Ltd ECJ 22-Sep-1998
The employer had refused to provide a reference after the claimant had left the company after making a sex discrimination claim. She said this was victimisation.
Held: The state has a duty to protect workers against retaliation after . .
CitedAkwiwu and Another v Onu EAT 1-May-2013
EAT Race Discrimination : Direct
Post Employment
The Claimant was a Nigerian woman who had . .
CitedJessemey v Rowstock Ltd and Another CA 26-Feb-2014
The court was asked whether a claim as to acts of victimisation could be sustained in connection with actions alleged after termination of employment.
Held: The appeal succeeded. The Act operated to proscribe such actions. However, this is one . .
CitedAnyanwu and Another v South Bank Student Union and Another HL 24-May-2001
The university had imposed a new constitution on its students union, which resulted in the dismissal of the claimant. He sought to assert racial discrimination.
Held: The concept of ‘aiding’ somebody in committing discriminatory behaviour . .
CitedCrane (T/A Indigital Satelite Services) v Sky In-Home Ltd and Another CA 3-Jul-2008
Arden LJ considered the principles to be applied when considering whether a party to civil litigation should be allowed to appeal a trial judge’s decision on the basis that a claim, which could have been brought before him but was not, would have . .
CitedBalls v Downham Market High School and College EAT 15-Nov-2010
Strike out. Whether claim had reasonable prospects of success. Whether failure to actively pursue a claim. Employment Tribunal failed to have regard to relevant law and reached . .
CitedGlatt and Others v Sinclair CA 26-Mar-2013
In exceptional cases the Court of Appeal will allow a party to advance fresh grounds not advanced before the court below . .
CitedDurant v Financial Services Authority CA 8-Dec-2003
The appellant had been unsuccessful in litigation against his former bank. The Financial Services Authority had subsequently investigated his complaint against the bank. Using section 7 of the Data Protection Act 1998, he requested disclosure of his . .
CitedPothecary Witham Weld (A Firm) and Another v Bullimore and Another EAT 29-Mar-2010
Ex-employee given unfavourable reference – Claim that terms of reference were partly on account of her having previously brought . .

Lists of cited by and citing cases may be incomplete.

Employment, Discrimination

Updated: 02 November 2021; Ref: scu.542928