Another multi-million pound discrimination case has hit the City – this time with HBOS facing an £11m claim for sex discrimination and wrongful dismissal.
Claire Bright, head of asset and liability management at HBOS, was suspended last October after a dispute with a male colleague. She claims this was unfair treatment.
Bright, who earned about £600,000 a year, returned to the banking group’s main London offices yesterday morning after the suspension ended.
However, after entering the building she claimed she had been dismissed by the firm.
Her lawyer, Gillian Howard, said Bright’s original claim was sex discrimination and victimisation but she was now adding unfair dismissal to her complaints against the organisation.
The claims for sex discrimination and victimisation have already been filed with Stratford employment tribunal.
An HBOS spokesman said that allegations of sex discrimination had been raised by Bright and added: “The grievance procedure is rigorous and comprehensive. This has been completed and Ms Bright’s allegations have not been upheld.”
The bank added it would “vigorously defend” the allegations.
Howard told Personnel Today: “I am dismayed at how HBOS has treated Bright during her grievance and yesterday when they refused to allow her to return to work after three and a half months’ unlawful suspension – because she lodged a grievance about her male boss.
“Bright is one of the most talented women in the City and I find it incredible that HBOS want to lose her,” she said.