Barclays in the red over bullying of blind employee

A
blind man who worked for Barclays Bank for 20 years and was used by the company
to promote its commitment to disabled people has been paid £20,000 after
claiming he was bullied in the workplace.

The
Guardian reports that Paul Brookes, 47, claimed he had typing correction fluid
dropped on his hair on three occasions, was given a leaving card from staff
signed "sod off" and that one of his colleagues made a derogatory
remark about his wife.

His
case for discrimination on the grounds of disability was due to come before an
employment tribunal later this year but Barclays has settled out of court.

Brookes
had worked as a telephonist for Barclays at its branch in Redditch for 17 years
without any problems and featured in the staff magazine in an article highlighting
Barclay’s commitment to equal opportunities.

But
Brookes claimed that the bullying began in 1996 when he was moved to a branch
in Kings Heath in Birmingham and continued after he was moved again 16 months
later to the city’s Colmore Row city centre branch.

He
alleged that management constantly criticised him and did nothing to stop the
bullying.

A
spokesman for Barclays said the bank is not making any admission of liability
and is confident its staff acted properly throughout.

By
Ben Willmott

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