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Thursday, 31 July 2014

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Cumbria hotel discriminated against mother-to-be

A CUMBRIA mum is celebrating being awarded more than £9,000 in compensation after a tribunal ruled her workplace discriminated against her when she became pregnant.

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PAYOUT Adele Harris of Torver with her husband Chris and their son Jacob. Mrs Harris was awarded more than £9,000 compensation for discrimination by her former employers. Inset: The Wilson Arms at Torver JON GRANGER REF: 50058046B001

The Wilson Arms in Torver has been ordered to pay Adele Harris £9,330 after an employment tribunal found the business treated her unfavourably because of her pregnancy.

The 23-year-old, who carried out bar work and waiting-on duties at the hotel, failed in her additional claim for unfair dismissal, but was happy with the overall outcome.

Mrs Harris, whose first child Jacob is now six months old, said she suffered financially, had to downgrade her wedding and honeymoon plans and endured stress and sleeplessness as a result of the ordeal.

The mum, who lives with husband Chris, 27, and Jacob in Butcher Moss, Torver, said: “It was worth it in the end. It just proves that you can’t get away with treating people like that.”

Mrs Harris started working at the Wilson Arms in August 2012 and said she enjoyed working there, carrying out between 40 and 50 hours a week.

She discovered she was pregnant on November 5, 2012.

Hotel boss Matthew Mayvers sent her a letter on November 12, 2012, to congratulate her on the news, but also informed her, without consultation, that her hours would immediately be reduced to 30 a week.

The tribunal ruled that was the first of four instances of discrimination against Mrs Harris. The second was that the business gradually reduced her hours further, before removing her from the rota and all working hours on January 4, 2013, which was the third instance of discrimination.

At that time it was only two months from the point Mrs Harris discovered she was pregnant and she told the Evening Mail she wanted to carry on working to keep earning.

The fourth count of discrimination was that the business did not offer her sufficient hours from January 4 until the termination of her employment.

Mrs Harris took the matter to tribunal in Carlisle on November 19 and 20 and represented herself.

A spokeswoman for the Wilson Arms said the business did not wish to comment.

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