Long-time readers of this blog will know of my disdain for civil lawsuits aimed at getting compensation for matters which seem wholly inapropriate to the actual damage done. While soldiers being blown up in Afghanistan get a fraction for losing major sections of their bodies.
Sussex Police have been found guilty of sexism in the case of a female PC who joined the firearms unit at Gatwick Airport in 2002. She sued the force after going off sick with depression following a number of incidents.
Among the inacceptable behaviour from male colleagues is cited leaving topless photos of women around the office, refusing to sit next to her, being called a ‘whoopsy’ a ‘lipstick’ & a ‘daisy’.
In 2007 the tribunal ruled that PC Barbara Lynford was subjected to offensive and sexual remarks and exposure to inappropriate material on duty for more than a year because she was a woma. She left the job at Gatwick after one year. After a four-year fight for money she has been awarded Ã‚Â£275,000 in damages. A further award of Ã‚Â£300,000 in compensation has been provisionally awarded dependent on whether or not she is found to be ualified to retire from the police on a sick pension, if she is she will not get the extra Ã‚Â£300,000.
Jamie Cooper, the youngest soldier to be blown up in Iraq when he was 18, said: “It is sickening. This is just not right. There are soldiers who have lost legs and arms fighting for their country – who cannot work as a result and who need care for the rest of their lives. But they have to make do on less than a woman who can’t take a bit of banter.”
Lynford is currently on sick leave while her claim for an ill-health pension is assessed.
She said: “In all my life I have never been treated as badly as I have been at Gatwick. I survived backpacking around India at the age of 19 for a few months, where I was even kidnapped and held against my will for a few days in Bombay.
“Nothing, however, prepared me for the people at Gatwick. I felt sick every time I went to work and cried every time I went home.”
In times of inspiration it sometimes works to turn to a Daily Mail Reader. Chris of Litchfield thinks: “As to this woman’s half-million payout for hurt feelings, it’s not a bad career move, is it? Move into a male-dominated unit, wait till someone says something about your tits, and KERCHING!!! Pension sorted, and no need to work ever again.”