Leader magazineASCL - Association of School and College Leaders

Discrimination 'by association' guidance

It is important to note that discrimination by association extends beyond disability.

A worker at an advice centre has won a case for discrimination (Saini v All Saints Haque Centre) on grounds of religion. The complainant was subjected to harassment that was intended to pressure him into giving evidence against a manager who was a Hindu, so that a group of Ravidassis could remove the manager from his post (the majority of the management team were of the Ravidassi sect).

The complainant lost trust and confidence in the management committee, not surprisingly, and resigned. This was a constructive dismissal. However, he also raised a question of religious discrimination.

The tribunal quoted a previous judgement to the effect that "as soon as we have ascertained that the basis of the employer's conduct is one of the prohibited grounds we enter into the realms of unlawful discrimination."

The actions of those with oversight of the centre were intended to remove a manager who was not of their religion. The constructive dismissal was therefore religious discrimination, even if directed to a third party.

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