Onigbanjo v London Borough of Croydon [2022] EAT 46

Appeal against the dismissal of the Claimant's claims of unfair dismissal, maternity/pregnancy discrimination and breach of contract. Appeal allowed in part.

The claimant, who was recognised as disabled, was a trainee Social Worker who went on maternity leave before she could complete the full first-year training and assessment. She had brought earlier proceedings in the ET which were successful in part. Prior to her return to work she sought access to training courses but was erroneously sent an out-of-date list. However, she was subsequently invited to contact the training department direct. The ET held that no maternity discrimination arose, on the facts. The ET did find that one act of the Respondent was an act of victimisation but dismissed another matter. The ET dismissed her claim of unfair dismissal. The Claimant appealed.

The EAT allowed one part of the appeal. On the maternity discrimination point, the EAT held that this was a conclusion the ET was entitled to reach. On the victimisation issue, the ET had not adequately explained the distinction between the two matters and the EAT remitted them for redetermination. On the unfair dismissal claim, given the gravity of the allegations, and the sensitivity of the claimant’s duties, suspension was inevitable and the ET’s conclusions regarding the fairness of the investigation and disciplinary process were ones which it was entitled to make.


Published: 03/08/2022 11:29

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