Racially abused worker offered 15p pay rise wins £36,000 compensation

A black factory worker who was offered a 15p pay rise to pacify her after she complained of suffering racial abuse, has been awarded £36,000 in compensation.

After Petra Worboyes was promoted to the role of quality control operator at playing card manufacturer Cartamundi, a feud started between her and her quality controller, Freda George, which led to Worboyes accusing George of racially abusing and mistreating her.

In an attempt to resolve the dispute, Worboyes was offered a 15p pay rise, but instead took the company to an employment tribunal, where she won her case of racial discrimination.

The tribunal heard George told Worboyes: “You are only a n****r, what do you know? I’m not putting up with people like you walking around like you own the place.”

George was then accused of continuing to make critical remarks about Worboyes, refusing to share jobs with her and ostracizing her.

Worboyes said she lodged a number of complaints against George but they were ignored.

When Worboyes then made an official written complaint she was subsequently demoted back to her original job, on her original pay, the Telegraph reported.

Worboyes went off work sick, and after she complained of racial harassment, bullying and “being punished for putting her grievances in writing”, the company tried to compromise by offering both Worboyes and George an increase of 15p an hour, bringing their pay to £5.90 an hour.

She lodged a tribunal claim in December 2006, complaining of both direct and indirect race discrimination and victimisation, and the tribunal ruled she had been “less favourably treated on grounds of her race”. In March, Worboyes was awarded £36,728.83 in compensation against Cartamundi.

Cartamundi appealed the decision, but lost this case.

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