A Subway sandwich store employment agency has recently been found guilty of discriminating against an autistic employee, and has suffered a £15,484 Tribunal award.
The employer in this case was Regal Consultancy Limited, who supplies staff to Subway stores in Suffolk.
A hygiene inspection had revealed that the workplace area that Mr Everitt – the claimant in this case – was responsible for had been a mess and that out of date food had not been thrown away. Mr Everitt is autistic and disabled for the purposes of the Equality Act 2010.
A disciplinary process was followed, but Mr Everitt was not allowed to bring a family member to accompany him. This was the basic reason for the finding of disability discrimination, because the Tribunal conjectured that he would have been subject to fast-paced questioning and potentially complicated questions. It therefore would have been a reasonable adjustment to allow him to be accompanied by a member of his family.
Mr Everitt wanted to fight the case in the Tribunal to illustrate his view that people with autism are ignored in the workplace. In these cases it is not possible to settle in order to avoid reputational damage.